During the night of Monday the 22 October 2021, in the town of Necocli (Antioquia), Acandi and Capurgana (Chocó) in Colombia, a Multi-Sector Initial Rapid Assessment (MIRA) has been conducted by OCHA, WFP, OIM, ACNUR, Pastoral Social, Cáritas Alemania, NRC, Terre de Hommes, MAPP-OEA, OPS/OMS, UNICEF, World Vision, CRC, FISCH, and the Ombudsman in order to assess the dire humanitarian situation driven by mixed migratory flows, that sum up more than 15.000 refugees and migrants (about 20% of them are children1) coming from Haiti, Cuba, Venezuela, and some African countries, who are stranded in the municipality of Necocli seeking to reach Central America and the US by crossing the Darien Gap. With the daily influx of more than 1.000 migrants, the humanitarian situation for refugees and migrants as well as host communities have worsened: local authorities are overwhelmed, transportation prices are dramatically increasing, public and social services are collapsed (mainly healthcare and WASH services), the creation of illegal migration routes and changes in socio-cultural dynamics that trigger negative coping mechanisms, mainly in adolescents who are dropping out school to seek irregular sources of income. Besides, the government of Panama only allows the entry of 500 people daily, contributing to the stagnation of refugees and migrants in the neighboring towns.
It is expected the situation will worsen as it has been foreseen an increase of the migration inflow in the coming months.
There is a pressing necessity to provide immediate assistance to minimize loss of life, protection-related risks, and ensure that the needs of the most vulnerable are covered first. Local members have envisaged providing humanitarian relief through the adaptation of temporary shelters that meet the habitability conditions. It is also expected, through partners such as World Vision, to provide assistance in food security, WASH, and Protection (including SGBV and Child Protection), and the delivery of traveler kits.
ACT Alliance is currently monitoring the situation and the ACT forum is planning on submitting a RRF proposal to provide protection services (especially to children), food vouchers, unconditional transfers, and traveler kits to ensure that the floods affected persons’ basic needs are met with regards to Nutrition, Protection, Health.