© UNICEF/HQ02-0567/Pirozzi

A boy embraces his grandmother in a village near Maseru, capital of Lesotho. He is one of three grandchildren she is caring for since the death of their parents from AIDS.


The humanitarian crisis in Lesotho is caused by a combination of economic, political and social factors causing the unfolding livelihood crises of food insecurity, HIV and AIDS and poverty. Prevailing drought conditions in Southern Africa have severely impacted Lesotho during the last decade and 2007 was no exception as the Government declared a state of emergency. The current humanitarian situation in the country is posing a big threat to the general well-being of women and children and is expected to further worsen the already precarious conditions in Lesotho during 2008.


Health and nutrition: UNICEF will procure and distribute essential emergency supplies and equipment to all hospitals and health centres; support 60 therapeutic feeding centres; and train health staff in managing severe malnutrition. UNICEF will also continue to strengthen the nutritional surveillance system and routine immunization as well as vitamin A supplementation and health and nutrition services.

Water, sanitation and hygiene: UNICEF will provide affected persons with safe water and sanitation facilities by constructing/rehabilitating wells and sanitary facilities, training water committees, conducting water and sanitation assessments, and promoting hygiene education and hygiene awareness programmes in schools, communities and health centres.

Education: UNICEF will support the monitoring of teachers’/students’ attendance as well as provide basic school materials and recreational kits for in- and out-of-school children.

Child protection: UNICEF will train NGO workers, teachers and health staff on preventing and responding to violence/abuse, as well as provide psychosocial support and training.

Summary of UNICEF financial needs for 2008
Sector US$
Health and nutrition 634,000
Water, sanitation and hygiene 990,000
Education 150,000
Child protection 575,000
Total* 2,349,000

*The total includes a maximum recovery rate of 7 per cent. The actual recovery rate on contributions will be calculated in accordance with UNICEF Executive Board Decision 2006/7 dated 9 June 2006.