The Rohingya, the Forgotten Refugee Crisis

December 21, 2022

Jahangir, 6, and Sifatara, 3, access medical care with their mother, Modina, 24, at Save the Children’s health center in Cox’s Bazar. (Photo credit: Sonali Chakma, Save the Children)

The Rohingya have faced years of systemic discrimination and abuse in their native Myanmar. Today, over 920,000 Rohingyas live in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh – the largest refugee camp in the world.

Response of International Relief Teams

Since 2018, International Relief Teams has responded to the Rohingya refugee emergency.

·        In 2018, International Relief Teams provided more than 20,000 people with solar lighting that greatly reduced the risk of violence for women and children and allowed children to continue their studies after hours.

·        In 2019, International Relief Teams provided floor mats, mosquito nets, and clothing for babies and children, assisting approximately 2,000 Rohingya families.

·        In 2021, during the COVID-19 pandemic, tragedy struck the refugee camp again. A massive fire swept through, destroying everything in its path. Families were left without shelter, food,water, money or clothing. International Relief Teams helped support these families by providing dry food and water, clothing, hot meals, and other relief supplies so desperately needed for their survival.

·        In 2022, International Relief Teams provided food, water and healthcare services and helped to build, repair and maintain latrines.

Rasheda’s Story

Rasheda Begum had been living with her husband, Mohammed, and four children in Balukhali Camp in Bangladesh since fleeing her native Myanmar in 2017. Despite facing many hardships, the family remained resilient and hopeful. Sadly, they fell victim to the large fire in March 2021 that swept through their camp and destroyed everything they had.

“I saw huge smoke occurring, spreading from one side of the hill to another. People were shouting and panicking. I saved my child and ran away to another bazar. After returning to the camp the next day to our allotted place, I saw nothing but ashes everywhere, as if the fire had been burning for three years,” expressed Rasheda, with tears in her eyes. “It was difficult to deal with life and our urgent needs at the time.”

Thanks to International Relief Teams’ generous donors and on-the-ground partners, families received the supplies and services they needed to rebuild their lives.

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