Map of Niger
UNICEF photo: In Abala camp, Malian refugee children on their way to school, Abala camp located north-east of Niamey, Niger 2013. © UNICEF Niger/2013/H.Dicko In Abala camp, Malian refugee children on their way to school, Abala camp located north-east of Niamey, Niger 2013.

Niger

In 2014, UNICEF and partners plan for:
356,324

children in humanitarian situations aged 6 to 59 months affected by severe acute malnutrition are admitted for treatment

937,480

children in humanitarian situations aged 0 to 11 months vaccinated against measles

800,000

people in humanitarian situations access sufficient quantity of water of appropriate quality for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene, use appropriate sanitation facilities, and practice appropriate hygiene behaviours

2014 Requirements: US$33,227,631

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Humanitarian situation

Snapshot

Total affected population: 5.3 million*
Total affected children: 3.1 million*

Total people to be reached in 2014: 3.4 million
Total children to be reached in 2014: 1 million

With more frequent recurring crises, Niger is facing multifaceted humanitarian needs, including structural challenges linked to generalized poverty, rapid population growth, security threats from neighbouring countries and population movements. In addition, exposure to climate change, limited access to basic social services and insufficient emergency preparedness are also impacting the humanitarian situation. As of June 2014, 230 areas composed of 4,648 villages are vulnerable to food insecurity. In these areas, 5.3 million people are considered at risk of food insecurity1. Prevalence of global acute malnutrition (GAM) and severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in children aged 6 to 59 months is 13.3 per cent and 2.6 per cent, respectively2. While these rates have declined, they remain higher than the rates registered during the 2012 food and nutrition crisis. Together with WFP, UNICEF ensures the treatment of more than 900,000 children suffering from acute malnutrition including 356,324 children under 5 suffering from SAM, a life-threatening condition. Also, despite a gradual improvement of the security situation in Mali followed by the spontaneous return of some Malian refugees in 2013, this repatriation process was suspended after Kidal incidents in May 2014. Since then, the arrival of more than 4,000 households in-country was recorded3. Additional arrivals are expected. Moreover, the emergency situation in bordering Nigeria did not improve over the past months. The number of 50,000 displaced people who fled Nigeria to find refuge in Niger is considered a minimum estimate4 and additional Nigerian refugees are anticipated in Niger. Furthermore, as a consequence of the large cholera epidemic facing northern Nigeria in 20145, Niger registered 233 cases including 10 deaths as of the end of June, mainly in Maradi, Zinder and Tahoua regions, in neighbouring health districts of Nigeria. With the onset of the rainy season and the population movements in the region, an increase in the number of cases in all bordering districts is foreseen.

Humanitarian strategy

2014 Revised Programme Targets

Nutrition

  • 356,324 children in humanitarian situations aged 6 to 59 months affected by SAM are admitted for treatment

Health

  • 937480* children in humanitarian situations aged 0 to 11 months vaccinated against measles

WASH

  • 880,000* people in humanitarian situations access sufficient quantity of water of appropriate quality for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene, use appropriate sanitation facilities, and practice appropriate hygiene behaviours

Child protection

  • 30,000* children and adolescents in humanitarian situations access community spaces for socializing, playing and learning, and are protected from violence, abuse and exploitation

Education

  • 11,500* children and adolescents in humanitarian situations have continued access to quality formal and non-formal basic education (including through temporary structures) 

In 2014, the humanitarian strategy is in line with the government’s ‘Initiative 3N’6. This integrated multi-sector, multi-actor approach, known as the Communes de Convergence, combines humanitarian and development interventions to strengthen the capacity of Nigeriens and their institutions to cope with shocks. UNICEF supports the government’s response to humanitarian needs by treating an estimated annual caseload of more than 356,000 children affected by SAM, more than 100,000 people7 affected by displacement and 125,000 households8 vulnerable to water-borne diseases. Working with partners and as lead of the nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and protection clusters, UNICEF supports the integration of a minimum WASH package and of psychosocial support within nutrition interventions to respectively address the lack of access to WASH services, one of the main underlying causes of malnutrition and disease and to improve child development, promote healing and reduce the risk of relapse. To prevent the propagation of the cholera outbreak in collaboration with WHO, non-food item kits, including soap and household water treatment, are distributed in the most cholera-prone regions. UNICEF continues to work with the Ministries of Health and Water and Sanitation to fight cholera using a long-term sustainable approach. UNICEF will also continue to support the Government’s efforts to coordinate with Ministries and non-governmental organizations to expand essential services to emergency-affected populations through community-based facilities and population-based interventions, including nutrition, health, WASH, education and child protection networks. In response to the anticipated influx of additional refugees, UNICEF, as lead of the Education Cluster and co-lead of the Sub-Working Group Education for refugees will continue supporting UNHCR to improve access to quality education for more than 9,000 out of school refugee children to ensure a safe environment for children through quality education and access to Child Friendly Spaces.

Results 2014 (January to June)

Between January and June 2014, UNICEF and partners’ response focused on delivering integrated programmes while building capacity at the local level. UNICEF supported the Government’s efforts to expand the outpatient treatment programme, which effectively provided integrated SAM treatment (including cases with medical complications) to more than 155,000 children under 5 including psychosocial support for mother and child couples and ‘wash in nutrition’ activities, in partnership with non-governmental organizations. UNICEF ensured a timely WASH response to cholera outbreaks (233 cases including 10 deaths as of week 27) and the nutritional crisis reaching a total of 350,000 people, in collaboration with governmental and non-governmental partners. In collaboration with UNHCR, the Ministry of Education, and partners from non-governmental organizations, UNICEF ensured access to a quality education for almost 8,200 Malian refugee children attending pre-school, primary, secondary and non-formal education levels. UNICEF ensured as well psychosocial support to 1,620 refugee children in the camps. Implementation remains challenged by security constraints, especially in areas bordering Mali and Nigeria which meant that site visits and Diffa visits to refugee camps and host communities require armed escorts.

Funding requirements

In line with the revised Inter-Agency Strategic Response Plan for Niger, UNICEF is appealing for US$33.2 million to respond to the humanitarian needs of children and women in Niger for 2014. As of 30 June 2014, US$14.3 million, or 43 per cent of the revised requirements, have been received in contributions. Additional humanitarian funding will enable UNICEF to support the national response to the country’s continuing nutrition crisis, and will enable to provide critical WASH services to families facing the spread of cholera. Schools with separate latrines for refugee girls and boys, basic school supplies and equipment, and qualified teachers for primary education are also urgently needed to uphold children’s right to education. This is particularly important in Malian refugee camps, in reception areas and in locations receiving an influx of Nigerian refugees.

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1 Among them, 2.5 millions are considered at high risk of food insecurity according to the food insecurity vulnerability survey held at household level in May 2014.
2 Reported in the national nutrition SMART survey conducted in May/June 2013.Preliminary results of the 2014 SMART survey are not yet available.
3 According to SRP Mid-Year Review, more than 52,000 people from Mali are refugees in Niger.
4 UNHCR and OCHA have prepared contingency plans based on a figure of 100 000 people.
1 Famine Early Warning Systems Network, ‘West Africa Seasonal Monitor’, 3 November 2013.
5 In Nigeria, 24,625 cases with 365 deaths were reported by 18 states since the beginning of the year as of week 27.
6 Initiative 3N, Les Nigériens Nourrissent les Nigériens, ‘Nigeriens Feeding Nigeriens’.
7 Among the 102,000 people affected by displacement, UNICEF will concentrate its efforts on targeting refugee children ( 35,000 children)
8 UNICEF is targeting 250,000 people (35,000 households) through cholera prevention activities and 630,000 people (90,000 households) through Wash in Nut activities.
9 Data as of 30 May
10 Data as of 22 of June