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  • Total population: 10.5 million

  • Total population under 18: 5 million

  • Children affected by conflict: No precise data

  • Number of War Child projects in 2017: Two

  • Number of implementing partner organisations: None

  • Number of partners providing funding: One

  • Total child participants: 19,017 (9,646 girls and 9,371 boys)

  • Total adult participants: 2,392 (1,341 women and 1,051 men)

Why we're there

Burundi is one of the poorest countries in Africa, with some 80 per cent of the population living in poverty. This enduring hardship is the legacy of the civil war which erupted in 1993 between the Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups.

Today the humanitarian situation inside Burundi remains tense. President Nkurunziza’s decision to stay in office in April 2015 sparked an attempted military coup. The coup failed but sporadic outbreaks of violence continue. This violence has seen massive numbers of refugees leave Burundi for neighbouring states over the past three years.

UNHCR figures from December 2017 show that some 428,000 Burundians are still refugees in neighboring countries - more than half of whom are under the age of 18. These children and youth are exposed to significant risks - in particular the threat of sexual violence.

In addition, approximately 60 per cent of the 209,000 people displaced inside Burundi’s borders are children. Many of these children are at risk of abuse, neglect and exploitation. The violence in Burundi has, in turn, created widespread economic devastation. Across the entire country access to education is severely limited and children are vulnerable to economic exploitation in the form of dangerous child labour.

What We Do

War Child has worked in partnership with national NGOs inside Burundi since 2008 and established its own operations there in 2011. War Child works on rebuilding social structures inside Burundi and connecting them with at-risk children by strengthening the capacity of community-based structures concerning child protection.

Our projects are designed to deliver protection, psychosocial support and education to children inside Burundi. Our work to create safe and supportive environments provides the space where children can process their traumatic experiences, rebuild their confidence and contribute towards a better future - both for themselves and their communities.

Our Projects

Emergency Response Programme for Burundian Refugee Children:

War Child has set up an emergency response project to provide direct support to children, young people and their caregivers living in a refugee camp near Uvira in neighbouring DRC. Child Friendly Spaces are a major component of this project.

Child Protection and Psychosocial Support in Burundi:

Initiative to reinforce and strengthen local child protection systems through the capacity building of community structures. This project also encompasses training for children on child rights issues, allowing them to express their needs and ideas.