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Burkina Faso’s Growing Humanitarian Crisis

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) calls Burkina Faso the world’s fastest-growing displacement and protection crisis, with more than 1 million internally displaced people (IDPs) and counting. Among the displaced are an estimated 140,000 disabled people who struggle with discrimination, exploitation, and accessing aid. Disabled internally displaced people suffer disproportionately in Burkina Faso’s war with local bandits, jihadi groups and other terrorists. The leader of the host community where the Maigas now live said he regularly sees IDPs with disabilities struggling more than others. Chief Madiega Djambel thinks it’s good to support family members first, because they are the ones who care for the disabled ultimately. He points out that support should not be purely financial either but should extend to teaching a trade to those who are disabled. A top priority for the UNHCR is helping the disabled IDPs get access to aid, however, identifying people with disabilities is often difficult.