UNICEF's Humanitarian Action for Children 2013 highlights the humanitarian situation faced by millions of children and women and the support required to help their families, communities and national institutions meet their basic needs, promote their well-being and provide them with protection.
UNICEF is appealing for almost US$1.4 billion to assist millions of children, women and men by providing them with nutritional support, health care, water, sanitation, learning spaces and materials, protection services, shelter and information. This support is not only to provide lifesaving emergency interventions, but also to strengthen national preparedness systems and build resilience at community, subregional and national levels, so that avoidable illnesses and deaths are prevented and those affected are able to recover.In partnership with national governments, civil society organizations and other United Nations agencies, UNICEF works in some of the most challenging environments in the world to deliver results for millions of children and women threatened by natural disasters or complex emergencies. Despite challenges and constraints, sustained advocacy, political and financial commitment, and collaboration in 2012 resulted in achievements that need to be built upon and continued into 2013.
The past year saw the combined and cumulative effects of armed conflict, civil and political unrest, erratic and severe weather patterns, seismic activity, disease outbreaks and the global economic crisis lead to the death, illness, deprivation, displacement anddistress of a significant number of children, women and men across the globe.
The same factors caused the destruction or further degradation of homes, hospitals, schools, roads and other public and social infrastructure, services and networks, preventing millions of children from receiving treatment for illness, drinking safe water, going to school or even playing. Some children were separated from their primary caregivers, while others fled, unaccompanied, to safer locations. Meanwhile many others were recruited by armed groups as soldiers and labourers. Whether affected by disasters or conflict, they suffered psychological and social distress in addition to physical suffering and harm. All too often, these new disasters and conflicts occurred in areas already battered by successive economic, climatic,political and other security shocks, severely compromising the ability of caregivers to feed and protect their children, and fulfil their basic needs.
In order to prevent, address or overcome some of the consequences of these natural and human-made disasters in 2012, UNICEF initially appealed for US$1,284,358,000. During the course of the year, as new crises occurred and ongoing situations deteriorated or improved, the overall requirements were revised, and by the end of October had increased by 14 per cent to US$1,472,172,823. As of 31 October, US$664,475,807, or 45 per cent of the required funds, had been mobilized. In addition, UNICEF received US$19,573,247 from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and other funding sources to address the unforeseen needs for countries that were not part of the Humanitarian Action for Children 2012, appeal, bringing the total of funding mobilized to US$684,049,044.