The Rohingya refugee context in Bangladesh is a serious humanitarian crisis where the affected populations are receiving limited international aid, classifying as a protracted crisis where the provision of humanitarian assistance remains challenging. It is estimated that over 655,000 Rohingya refugees already live in Bangladesh before this influx that took place at the end of August 2017. Presently there is more than 1.2 million Rohingya population besides the local community in Ukhiya and Teknaf Upazila in Cox’s Bazar. The vulnerability of the Rohingya refugee population is assessed to be very high because of the lack of legal protection, relying essentially on community networks and international institutions. The local communities of the Cox’s Bazar district are themselves already extremely vulnerable as the district is one of the worst performing districts in Bangladesh with poverty above 50% and even worsened in certain sub-districts like Ukhiya and Teknaf. The low performance of Cox’s Bazar is related to its geographical isolation, natural disaster-prone area, scarce employment opportunities and limited access to basic services WASH, Food security, health, protection and education.
The Cox’s Bazar Rohingya camp is now very densely populated considering small space. Considering this challenge, the Government of Bangladesh built permanent shelters for them in Bhasan Char. The Char is an island under the district of Noakhali developed for relocating nearly 100,000 of over a million persecuted people from Rakhine sheltered in congested camps in Cox’s Bazar. The construction work was started in 2018 and around 21,000 people were shifted to Bhasan char so far. The population living in the Island faces multiple challenges in terms of nutritional foods, education, livelihood opportunities as well protection issues especially during this winter.