Government of Japan contributes over US$ 21 million for life-saving vaccines, and water and sanitation in Afghanistan’s schools

With this funding, UNICEF will provide vaccines for 18.3 million mothers and children across Afghanistan, and clean water for 30,000 people in four provinces.

26 March 2023
On 13th June 2022, eleven year old Sadaf Samadi holds a bar of soap at the UNICEF-supported Fatah Girls School in Herat, Afghanistan.

KABUL, March 26, 2023 – In support of better child health amidst a devastating humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, the Government of Japan has donated to UNICEF US$ 18 million in support of essential vaccines for over 18 million mothers and children, and US$3.6 million for water and sanitation facilities in public schools.

The vaccines include measles, rotavirus, tetanus and diphtheria, polio, hepatitis B and others. These funds will also enable UNICEF to reach around 10 million children with oral polio vaccines during national vaccination campaigns in 2023.

The US$ 3.6 million will enable UNICEF and partners to provide clean water, ventilated latrines, handwashing stations to 10,000 students – 50 per cent of whom are girls – in 20 schools. Additionally, these services will benefit a further 20,000 community members who will use the new water sources. These funds will also support teachers and community members with hygiene education to prevent the spread of disease.

“Japan’s longstanding support of children and mothers in Afghanistan is exemplary and much appreciated. These latest contributions build on previous years’ aid from the Government of Japan. The combination of a harsh winter and the ongoing humanitarian crisis means that mothers and children are vulnerable and at risk of communicable diseases. This support will not only help to give them the immunity boost they need to stay healthy, it will also improve sanitation and hygiene in schools,” said Rushnan Murtaza, UNICEF Afghanistan Deputy Representative.

Access to clean water and toilets are the basic rights of all children; it is the foundation of childhood health, nutrition and education.

“The Government and people of Japan recognize the tremendous humanitarian needs in Afghanistan,” says Takashi Okada, Ambassador of Japan to Afghanistan. “Complementing our past support to Afghanistan in health, nutrition and education, we hope these contributions will create cleaner, safer learning environments and communities for children and their families.”

Water and sanitation activities supported by this funding will be implemented in Ghor, Uruzgan, Zabul and Paktika provinces that are among the most deprived in Afghanistan. Immunization will be supported in all 34 provinces.

Media contacts

Samantha Mort
Chief of Communication & Advocacy
UNICEF Afghanistan
Tel: +93 799 98 7110
Sabrina Sidhu
Communication Specialist, Media
UNICEF South Asia
Tel: +91 98187 17522


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit

Follow UNICEF on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.