Ensuring a Safe Environment for IDPs in Kumba: Case Study Barombi Kang

Humanitarian profile – Kumba III Municipality

Hostilities due to the current Anglophone crisis in the Northwest and Southwest Regions of Cameroon has caused thousands of civilians to flee from villages and towns to other safer zones, some of which are currently seeking refuge at Barombi Camp 2 of the Kumba III Municipality.

Since 2018, the killings and burning of houses in these hit areas has adversely affected the lives of so many civilians who for fear of the unknown are in a state of dilemma as they flee to safer areas. Many families are coming together but some are joining neighbours and community members as they flee. The vast majority of IDPs are women and children. The host community; Barombi, has been generally accepting IDPs but some tensions are emerging around access to resources especially; water, food, medical care and electricity. Following the assessment, urgent needs are reported to be: Food, Relief Items, WASH, and Health.

Main Findings


The IDPs are currently settling in an abandoned primary school allocated to them by the host community and are (the IDPs) reported to know nothing about Kumba. Due to their vulnerability they have no intention of relocating to another area but choose to stay at this current settlement until they are financially stable to move out.

Though provided with shelters, the IDPs complain of lack of Mattresses, toilets, electricity, water, and healthcare to make their stay a little comforting. Some IDPs, however expressed they carry out small jobs like working in peoples farms to enable them secure food.

Identified needs                                                                                                    

Tensions expressed by some IDPs based on interviews and focused group discussions are:

  • Nutrition: Unfortunately, many of the IDPs struggle to meet their basic needs which increase their risk of food insecurity. This arises as a result being new in the area, inaccessibility to lands for farm use, lack jobs and no money. Some IDPs try to make a living by helping some host cultivate their farms to get a token to buy food.
  • WASH: Access to potable water remains a key constraint for these IDPs who will have to travel far distances to get this precious fluid.  They rely on an unsafe water source available at an elongated depression behind the camp for drinking, cooking, bathing and other water use activities.

“We sometimes take our bath here. We carry the water to wash clothes, to cook and sometimes for drinking”.

Interview with a child

The toilet available for use is messed up and is dilapidating with no doors and roof. Due to its open nature female IDPs are afraid to use it for the fear of contracting communicable diseases.

“We are fed up of cleaning because people pass by and just mess up the toilet. If the toilet had doors and roof we would have been able to keep it secure from hoodlums”


  • Health: Access to healthcare is difficult due to their increased inability to afford required services and supplies. The major physical health problems and symptoms common with IDPs here are; fever, malaria, malnutrition in children, and diarrhoea.  

“One of my children stepped on a nail and sustained an injury. Since we could not afford money to take him to the hospital, we had to insert hot oil in the wound to prevent further complications such as Tetanus.


Relief Items: IDPs have requested for some relief items such as mattress, mosquito nets, pots, food, etc.

“As we are here we don’t have electricity not to even talk of mattress to lay our heads on. We are suffering here; please you people should help us.”

Dipenda Alfred

Recommended needs for improvement as identified by mi niña

  • Support vulnerable people through the distribution of food, other household items, and agricultural inputs.
  • Improve availability of WASH services by providing materials, equipment, and training. Provide appropriate water storage containers and water treatment supplies to IDPs and vulnerable people within the host communities.
  • Construct a solar borehole.
  • Improve access to primary health care services for IDPs to targeted health district by providing financial and material support to patients.
  • Rehabilitate the current toilet.
  • Empower IDPs with entrepreneurial skills and provide them with start-up capital

1 Comment

  • Mark
    Posted September 11, 2022 4:50 am 0Likes

    Thanks for your blog, nice to read. Do not stop.

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