In emergencies, we must think quick and act fast. Whether conflict has caused people to flee their homes or political upheaval has displaced a population overnight, UNHCR is there to help. 

Photo: ©UNHCR/Gordon Welteres

UNHCR assists with global emergencies in 135 countries—across 546 locations. Our staff are based in some of the most isolated, volatile and challenging places in the world—reaching uprooted people most in need with critical humanitarian assistance and emergency disaster relief. 

Right now, there are 79.5 million men, women and children displaced by violence, conflict and persecution worldwide. We have thousands of staff directly helping the most vulnerable victims who have fled war, disaster or persecution. We host offices in donor countries worldwide and wherever refugees are arriving, working closely with governments to ensure the 1951 Refugee Convention is honoured. 

UNHCR provides essential services to refugees all over the world. We release core relief items such as blankets, water and medical supplies within 72 hours for around 600,000 refugees and people affected by conflict in simultaneous emergencies.  

UNHCR’s 2019 Global Trends Report warns of a dangerous new era in worldwide displacement. By the end of the year, 79.5 million individuals were forcibly displaced worldwide as a result of persecution, conflict, violence or human rights violations. As a result, the world’s forcibly displaced population remained yet again at a record high. 


Yemen is currently the world’s worst humanitarian crisiswith 80% of the population in need of humanitarian assistance. Increased violence is resulting in widespread casualties and massive displacement. 

Rohingya Crisis

Over 900,000 Rohingya refugees have been forced to escape violence in Myanmar by fleeing to Bangladesh – walking for days through jungles and mountains or braving dangerous sea voyages.  


Over 5.6 million people have fled Syria since 2011, seeking safety in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and beyond. Millions more are displaced inside Syria as war continues. 

A refugee boy from Central African Republic shows the groundnuts he will plant in Dosseye refugee camp. Many of the old caseload refugees grow food to make up for the current ration cut. @ UNHCR / C. Fohlen

Central African Republic

With armed groups controlling parts of the country, over 1 million Central African Republic (CAR) refugees have fled their homes in desperation, seeking safety.  

Central America

For those living in the North of Central America (NCA), everyday life unfolds in the shadow of constant fear. Worsening crime and violence, fuelled by drug cartels and gangs, accounts for much of the increase, along with fragile institutions, and increasing inequalities. 


Since the beginning of 2014, more than 3 million Iraqis have been displaced from their homes. Those returning to their areas of origin are facing a number of critical protection issues, living in fear and trapped in regions controlled by violent extremists.  

A man and a woman wait to get onto a bus in Libya


Hundreds of thousands of refugees and asylum seekers, including young children, have traveled to Libya to reach Europe, trying to find a safe place to call home after fleeing devastating violence, persecution and conflict at home.   

South Sudan

Since December 2013, brutal conflict in South Sudan has claimed thousands of lives and driven nearly 4 million people from their homes. 

People walking with suitcases


Over 5 million Venezuelans are now seeking protection in neighbouring countries, as families continue to flee their homes due to violence, insecurity, and lack of food, medicine and essential services.    

When a crisis strikes, UNHCR is on the ground saving lives within 72 hours.

UNHCR is often the first to arrive and the last to leave in an emergency, supporting those forced to flee their homes through no fault of their own. In the aftermath of a crisis, UNHCR remains on the ground to help revive devastated communities and help displaced families return, recover and restart their lives. 

UNHCR is with refugees at every stage of their journey—whenever and wherever needed. We set up refugee camps around the world, providing food aid, shelter and other basic living necessities. 

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