COVID-19 Impact Assessment: Urban Refugees and Asylum-seekers in Thailand

Publication language
Date published
30 Jul 2020
United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees (UNHCR)
Rapid Learning Review
COVID-19, Epidemics & pandemics, Forced displacement and migration, Refugee Camps, Livelihoods, Needs assessment, Protection, human rights & security, Social protection

A Multi-sector Rapid Needs Assessment and Post-distribution Monitoring of Cash Support report from UNHCR in Thailand working with the urban refugee population. The report provides an overview of findings from the RNA and PDM exercise and proposes a series of recommendations to strengthen efforts by UNHCR, other UN agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the Royal Thai Government to better support refugees and asylum-seekers during this unprecedented and particularly challenging time.

The number of urban refugees approaching UNHCR for financial support has more than doubled since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is anticipated that the financial needs of the urban refugee population will grow as the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be felt. Having observed increased levels of vulnerability relating to restrictions on movement, loss of livelihood opportunities and access to healthcare, these organisations, led by UNHCR, carried out a multi-sectoral Rapid Needs Assessment (RNA) to strengthen understanding of the situation of this oftentimes hidden population. This focused on a range of areas, including: COVID-19 knowledge, experience, behaviour and norms, health, education, employment and access to basic necessities. The findings, outlined below, provide a stronger evidence base from which to design protection and programme interventions.