|Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow sits in a ward that was looted by rebels at the Therapeutic Feeding Center in the town of Kayna. The centre was looted a few weeks ago. Everything was taken, including medicine, food and mattresses.|
NORTH KIVU, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 11 December 2008 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow arrived in conflict-affected North Kivu today, at the start of a three-day mission to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
While there, she will witness first hand the devastating impact of the recent fighting, which has let to an estimated 300,000 displaced people in the last three months. The total number of internally displaced is around one million, or 20 per cent of the entire North Kivu population.
“I have come here to better understand how people are coping with this crisis and what needs to be done,” Ms. Farrow said.
|Mia Farrow meets with children under the watch of a UN peacekeeper in Kanyabayonga.|
Children, as always, are the most vulnerable and the condition of newly displaced children and women is desperate. Thousands have had very little to eat since fleeing. Their access to clean water and health care has been minimal. Hundreds of children are presumed to have been separated from their families, forced to fend for their survival on their own.
The school year that had just started has been disrupted for tens of thousands of children - the second year in a row.
While in North Kivu, Ms. Farrow will visit conflict-affected villages, areas of displacement and see how UNICEF and its partners are responding to the needs of children and their families.