UAE charity witnesses first hand Rohingya's 'catastrophic plight'

Big Heart Foundation provides shelter, food, water and healthcare to refugees

The Big Heart Foundation delegation visit Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhia. Courtesy The Big Heart Foundation
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A delegation from a Sharjah-based humanitarian charity has travelled to the Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhia, Bangladesh, to witness first hand the Rohingya’s growing need for aid, including shelter, food, water and healthcare.

The visit by the Big Heart Foundation (TBHF) was organised with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Almost 600,000 Rohingya refugees have fled violence in Myanmar since August 25. Among them are heavily pregnant women, elderly people and children, many of which need of urgent medical care.

“Rohingya refugees, especially women and children, are facing a catastrophic humanitarian plight after they have been forcibly displaced from their homes, a tragedy that resulted in separating family members and keeping them away from their homes that they worked hard for long years to build them,” said Sheikh Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, chair of the foundation and the wife of Sharjah's ruler.

“The violation of the rights of many children, who have been deprived of living with their families and enjoying life with their friends, made children feel insecure and deprived of being brought up in a healthy and proper environment as their peers around the world."

The delegation also met numerous refugee families trying to survive the deplorable conditions in the overcrowded camps facing an extreme shortage of food, shelter and basic healthcare.

“The visit to Rohingya refugee camps by heads of government organisations and private corporations reinforces the UAE’s spirit of solidarity and our readiness to extend a helping hand to members of the global human community in need,” she added.

“Our human ambassadors of hope were there to encourage those who have lost hope, and on the basis of information collected during this visit, we will try our best to help our Rohingya sisters and brothers cope with the burdens of displacement.”

More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh from northern Rakhine state after the Myanmar military launched a counter-insurgency operation. It was in response to attacks by Rohingya militants on an army base and police posts on August 25.