The EA program 38 which has since January 2013 began with the reinforcement of capacity building of Caritas Sahel (Burkina Faso, Niger, Senegal and Mali), with the aim to provide an effective emergency response and coordinated directly or indirectly people affected by the conflict in Mali.
The money the family receives from Catholic Relief Services, a Caritas member based in the USA. It covers the rent. Sometimes there’s enough to go towards some rice or millet to eat. The luxuries, like the colorful bracelets Djélika likes, will have to wait.
CADEV, Caritas Niger is working in four camps helping 18,000 Malian refugees. They fled there after rebels seized the north of Mali last year, triggering a flow of refugees in Africa’s Sahel region. Caritas Niger is registering an increase of refuges since the French military intervention in January.
The president of Caritas Mali, Archbishop Jean Zerbo of Bamako, has asked for a humanitarian corridor to be opened to help those who have found themselves cut off by the conflict. Caritas is helping families in Mali cover their basic needs by providing food, shelter and help with healthcare and school fees.
The refugees are arriving in semi-desert areas of neighbouring countries, where populations already struggle to cope with lack of food and resources. This wave of people puts huge pressure on the local environment driven by the increased demand for firewood and pasture for livestock.