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DRC has been operating in Bangladesh since 2014, and in 2017 we started providing emergency assistance to the Rohingya population arriving from neighbouring Myanmar.

Sina Hasan

Current situation

Today, the world’s largest camp complex for displaced persons is located in Bangladesh. Despite being one of the most densely populated countries in the world, Bangladesh has generously received asylum seekers for decades, primarily people fleeing recurring waves of conflict in neighbouring Myanmar’s Rakhine State.

In 2017, an outbreak of hostilities in Rakhine triggered a large-scale displacement of more than 600,000 Rohingya people, who fled across the border into Bangladesh to seek refuge. 

Here, they joined a large preexisting refugee population in Cox’s Bazar and neighbouring Bandarban districts. This is where an estimated 961,000 Rohingya refugees and 514,000 host community members in Cox’s Bazar now reside, facing a dire need for humanitarian assistance.  

Core sectors Bangladesh

Economic Recovery
Humanitarian Disarmament and Peacebuilding
Shelter and Settlements
Camp Coordination and Camp Management

Displacement trends

Source: | UNHCR

28 Aug 2023

Bangladesh: Empowering women in refugee host communities

21 Jun 2023

Press Release: In 2022 DRC reached more than 19 million people with crucial assistance

20 Jun 2023

Bangladesh: Displaced within the world’s largest refugee camp

15 May 2023

DRC launches cyclone emergency response in Myanmar and Bangladesh

01 Apr 2023

Promoting Climate Change Adaptation & Resilient Practices in Southern Coastal Areas in Bangladesh

31 Mar 2023

DRC Standby Roster monitoring mission: Working for protection and durable solutions for refugees and IDPs in Bangladesh

DocumentsAll Documents

'Protecting Rohingya Refugees - Addressing Evolving Protection Needs' | REPORT ON ROUND TABLE DISCUSSION

04 Jun 2023

Bangladesh working areas 2023

01 Mar 2023

Factsheet 2022 Bangladesh

22 Feb 2023

Refugee protection, human smuggling, and trafficking in Bangladesh and Southeast Asia

16 Jan 2023

Protecting Refugees in Asia (PRiA)

26 Oct 2022

Photobook: Together we stand

24 Jul 2022

Why we are there

The Rohingya residing in Bangladesh prior to 2017 are registered as refugees and allowed to stay on, while those who arrived after August 2017 were given the status as Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals (FDMN) who are to be repatriated.  

Further complicating the humanitarian situation, the Rohingya population is concentrated in a small and underdeveloped coastal area of southeastern Bangladesh, which is prone to natural disasters like floods and cyclones.

With resources and capacities already chronically stretched in the country, DRC’s presence and support in Bangladesh is critical to meeting the needs of affected populations and their host communities. 

What we do

DRC has been operating in Bangladesh since 2014, and in 2017, DRC started providing emergency assistance to the Rohingya population arriving from neighbouring Myanmar. As of 2023, DRC works in seven Rohingya camps and one host community, sub-district Ukhiya in Cox’s Bazar, with activities covering three DRC core sectors

Kutupalong-Balukhali, located at the border with Myanmar, is the largest of the camps in the complex and home to the vast majority of the Rohingya, who are living in makeshift bamboo and tarpaulin shelters. DRC works on the ground to provide access to protection services and shelter materials, to develop alternative livelihoods and to improve infrastructure.

Despite the challenges during situations such as lockdowns due to Covid-19, DRC has been able to continue providing emergency assistance and support in collaboration with groups of volunteers from among both the Rohingya and host communities to strengthen their resilience to cope with crises. 

In addition to providing individual protection services for vulnerable adults and children, DRC also works with the Office of the Refugee Relief and Repatriation Commissioner of the Government of Bangladesh to provide site management services, improving the standards of shelter and living conditions for residents of the camps.

Working in collaboration with

Eco-Social Development Organization (ESDO)
Eco-Social Development Organization (ESDO)
EU Consortium - ʻStrengthening protection, health, and resilience of refugees and host communities in Coxʼs Bazar, Bangladesh'
Humanity & Inclusion (HI)
Humanity & Inclusion (HI)
International Rescue Committee (IRC)
International Rescue Committee (IRC)
Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)

Our work is funded by

Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs
European Union
European Union
International Organization for Migration
International Organization for Migration