Since August 2017, more than 870,000 people from Myanmar's Rakhine state have fled to Bangladesh after an escalation of violence. Most of the refugees, around 80 per cent, are women, children and babies.

The bulk of those who have fled are living in makeshift camps, fields and muddy paths in Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh across from the Myanmar border.

This scale of influx is putting enormous strain on the Bangladesh government and local communities who are already facing poverty.

People are in desperate need of shelter, food, clean water and sanitation and health services. A large number of children under five are suffering from severe malnutrition and there is also fear of a cholera outbreak. Women and girls in particular are at serious risk. CARE’s team have met women who have shared horrific stories of sexual violence, including rape and trafficking, experienced in their journey to escape Myanmar.


  • So far, CARE has reached more than 150,000 people with emergency response efforts focused on food, water, shelter, gender-based violence, sexual and reproductive health, hygiene and nutrition
  • CARE and partners have helped to provide transitional shelter assistance to 4,507 refugee households
  • 12 safe spaces for women and girls and 2 information booths have been established to offer a space for socializing and counselling for refugee women
  • Over 147 ,000 people have been supported with wells, latrines, hand washing facilities and women-only areas
  • Over 15,000 households have been given family hygiene dignity kits distributed to and regular hygiene sessions are on-going
  • CARE and partners have set up 4 health centers offering primary and reproductive health services, free medicine, referrals to other hospitals, and ambulance services
  • Children under five with malnutrition are receiving treatment and services through 34 nutrition centres with CARE-trained staff


CARE has worked in Bangladesh since 1949, and has extensive experience responding to humanitarian disasters. CARE has worked in Cox’s Bazar district, where most refugees have sought shelter, for many years, working in the areas of food security, disaster risk reduction, women’s empowerment and emergency response. In the last five years, CARE Bangladesh has supported more than 450,000 people with life-saving assistance.