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UNHCR Innovation Fund Supports Health Clinic in South Sudan

Imagine a solution to a particular need that was designed and carried out by the very people who have that need. That’s the heartbeat of UNHCR’s new Refugee-Led Innovation Fund, which champions innovation by all people who have experienced forced displacement – including refugees, returnees, and stateless people.

Out of over 1,600 entries globally, Hope Health Action East Africa (HHA EA) and 16 other organisations have recently been awarded a notable Innovation Fund grant to improve the lives of displaced people and host communities.

An increasing number of refugee families are returning from Uganda to South Sudan’s Kajo-Keji, but they’re finding their communities completely devastated. There is no infrastructure or adequate health services for returnees. For example, there were 49 health facilities in Kajo-Keji before the conflict. Now only 14 exist and they offer only very basic services. Whilst this carries implications for every returnee, this adversely affects women and children in particular, as well as people with disabilities or chronic illness.

The solution? A new health clinic that will improve outcomes for returnees in Kajo-Keji. This clinic will initially serve up to 500 patients per month, with CRADLE providing coverage for around 17,300 women of child-bearing age. Additionally, around 2,300 households with a person with a disability will be supported by community-based rehabilitation services.

Our Rebuild Hope Appeal began the fundraising process with tremendous success, thanks to our lovely supporters. This UNHCR Refugee-Led Innovation Fund award, alongside the Rebuild Hope Appeal results, will help push the clinic forward with breathtaking momentum. In fact, preparations are well underway! Refurbishment of the clinic building will begin in May, and recruitment for key staff positions is already in progress. We hope to open the clinic in Autumn of this year, and we are thrilled to bring you with us on the journey to opening day.

Designed by refugees for refugees, the Innovation Fund is creating a way forward for displaced people. We are honoured to play our part, with the help of this funding, by supporting South Sudanese returnees in Kajo-Keji with this new health clinic.

Check out this Tweet from UNHCR highlighting two of our HHA EA staff, and hear how HHA EA hopes to transform lives in South Sudan.