Canada’s Deputy Ambassador to Nepal, Jess Dutton, today announced a contribution of CAD $ 250,000 by the Government of Canada to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Nepal to improve access to essential services for the Bhutanese refugees.
The announcement was made during his visit to refugee camps in eastern Nepal, where he interacted with Bhutanese youth and women groups.
“We are grateful to the Government of Canada for this generous contribution,” said Craig Sanders, UNHCR Representative in Nepal. “Canada has been a longstanding partner and such funding helps us to continue to provide vital services for the Bhutanese refugees in the two remaining camps.”
The donation comes at a time when maintaining camp services at a desired level is proving increasingly difficult due to limited resources and a funding shortage.
The grant will be used to provide various services including shelter, health, water, sanitation, education, protection and legal assistance for some 15,500 Bhutanese refugees who remain in Beldangi and Sanischare camps.
“We are pleased to support UNHCR Nepal in helping Bhutanese refugees with their essential needs,” said Dutton. “Our assistance reaffirms the importance we place on protecting the human rights of refugees.”
The grant is part of the CAD $ 32.6 million support to UNHCR announced by the Government of Canada earlier this year to assist and protect people of concern in 20 countries.
Since 2007, Canada has become home to over 6,600 resettled Bhutanese refugees. It is one of eight resettlement countries that have accepted more than 103,000 Bhutanese refugees since the beginning of the third country resettlement program in late 2007.
According to a press release issued by UNCHR, Prior to this program, some 108,000 refugees from Bhutan were living in seven camps in Jhapa and Morang districts in eastern Nepal.
UNHCR Nepal continues to work with the Government of Nepal and other partners to find sustainable solutions for the refugees who will not resettle.