UNICEF is requesting US$40.5 million to meet the humanitarian needs of children in Niger in 2015.
In 2015, UNICEF and partners plan for:
children aged 6 to 59 months affected by SAM are admitted for treatment
people in humanitarian situations, or at-risk, access sufficient quantity of quality water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene, use appropriate sanitation facilities and practice appropriate hygiene behaviours
children and adolescents in humanitarian situations access adequate psycho-social support facilities and counselling
2015 Requirements: US$40,500,000
Total affected population: 3.6 million
Total affected children: 2.1 million
Total people to be reached in 2015: 1.3 million
Total children to be reached in 2015: 1 million
Niger is facing a multi-faceted humanitarian crisis caused by food insecurity, malnutrition, population movements, epidemics, and natural disasters. According to new estimates, 3.6 million1 people are at risk of food insecurity. In 2015, new attacks by Boko Haram in both Nigeria and Niger have caused the displacement of more than 106,000 people from Nigeria to Diffa and the internal displacement of over 66,000 Niger nationals within the Diffa region2. Children are especially exposed to family separation, exploitation and violence, and need special care and protection. As a result of combined factors, including population movements, food insecurity, and epidemics3, the number of children at risk of severe acute malnutrition (SAM) has more than doubled in the Diffa region. Niger is still hosting 50,000 Malian refugees whose return remains bleak, due to persisting security concerns in their home country. Niger’s humanitarian context is also characterized by regular natural disasters and epidemics. The July to October 2015 rainy season is expected to cause flooding and affect an estimated 150,0004 people in several regions, including Diffa. During the first half of the year, Niger experienced a meningitis outbreak with 8,500 cases and more than 500 deaths, over 70 per cent of whom included children between the ages of 2 and 15. Measles continues to be registered in the country, with over 5,000 cases and 20 deaths reported between January and the end June 2015. Finally, while no cholera cases have been registered since the end of January 2015, with the upcoming rainy season and the increasing population movements in vulnerable regions, UNICEF and the WASH cluster partners estimate that 250,000 people may be affected before the end of the year.
Humanitarian strategy (July to December 2015)
Revised 2015 Programme Targets
- 368,114 children aged 6 to 59 months affected by SAM are admitted for treatment
- 968,919 children in humanitarian situations aged 9 months to 14 years vaccinated against measles
- 681,752 people in humanitarian situations, or at-risk, access sufficient quantity of quality water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene, use appropriate sanitation facilities and practice appropriate hygiene behaviours
- 46,000 children and adolescents in humanitarian situations access adequate psycho-social support facilities and counselling
- 32,992 children and adolescents in humanitarian situations have continued access to quality formal and non-formal basic education (including through temporary structures)
- 1,500,000 people at risk of Ebola reached through awareness raising campaigns
HIV and AIDS
- 315 pregnant women who test positive for HIV provided with anti-retrovirals for PMTCT in Diffa region
UNICEF and its partners will continue to support the Government in responding to the needs of approximately 1.3 million vulnerable people, of whom over 368,000 are children affected by SAM. Approximately 220,000 are displaced (including at least 130,000 children) by worsening conflicts in Nigeria and in Mali; and almost 680,000 are vulnerable to water-borne diseases. UNICEF will continue to support the Government in emergency preparedness and contingency planning for flooding, epidemics and other crises. UNICEF will also support the Government, in providing access to quality, basic services and provision of non-food items (NFIs) to communities and children affected by the conflict, with a particular focus on the Diffa region. In the camps, UNICEF will continue to support access to education for Malian refugees. UNICEF leads the nutrition, WASH, education and child protection clusters in Niger. In this capacity, UNICEF supports the integration of WASH and psycho-social support packages within nutrition interventions to increase WASH access, improve child development, promote healing and reduce the risk of relapse following discharge from malnutrition treatment.
While there have been no cholera outbreaks reported in the country since January 2015, UNICEF remains on alert, with an increased focus on the Diffa region, which is highly vulnerable due to the current security and humanitarian context. UNICEF will continue to advocate with the Government to maintain a minimum stock of meningococcal vaccine to respond to a potential meningitis outbreak during the dry season, which is expected in late 2015/early 2016.
Results to date (1 January to 30 June 2015)
With 47 per cent (US$18.9 million) of the US$40.5 million appeal available as of 30 June 2015, UNICEF and partners’ response has focused on supporting implementation and building capacity at the local level. UNICEF supported the Government’s efforts to expand the outpatient treatment programme for children with SAM. A total of 144,943 children under-five affected by SAM have been treated in the first half of the year, including those children with medical complications. A subgroup of children and their mothers accessed psycho-social support and ‘WASH in Nutrition’ activities in partnership with non-governmental organizations. UNICEF supported the Ministry of Health through (a) the provision of 462,000 doses of trivalent meningococcal meningitis vaccine which reached 462,000 children aged 2 to14 years, representing about 57 per cent of the 807,564 children vaccinated; and (b) messaging to affected communities and the general public about the global shortage of meningococcal C vaccine and the need to seek prompt treatment in case of symptoms. While no cases of Ebola have been registered in Niger, UNICEF and partners have developed a contingency plan for Ebola and reached approximately 1.5 million people through awareness raising campaigns. At the end of June 2015, a total of 629,825 children had been immunized against measles: 254,664 children in the Diffa region through two campaigns supported by UNICEF to increase immunity in refugee, displaced and host community children; and 375,161 children in response to an outbreak in Maradi and Zinder regions. Over 100,000 people accessed hygiene kits and sensitization activities.
UNICEF provided access to quality education for over 4,300 Malian refugee children and over 3,000 children affected by the Nigeria crisis. UNICEF also provided child-friendly services and psychosocial support services to over 14,000 children affected by the crises in Nigeria and Mali.
In line with Niger’s Inter-Agency 2015 Strategic Response Plan, UNICEF is requesting US$40.5 million to meet the humanitarian needs of children in the country. This funding will enable UNICEF to support the national response to the country’s continuing nutrition crisis affecting more than 368,000 children under-five suffering from SAM. It will also support displaced populations and children in need of basic social services, particularly health, access to drinkable water and education as well as psychosocial support and protective care. Finally, this funding will enable UNICEF to prepare and respond timely and effectively to new epidemics and to natural disasters.