Kabul, 3 February 2019 - Today, UNICEF Afghanistan launches its Humanitarian Action for Children (HAC) 2019 appeal, which highlights a total of 6.3 million people in dire need of humanitarian support, including 3.8 million children.
UNICEF is appealing for US 50 million to provide much needed lifesaving support to more than 570,000 children with basic health and nutrition packages, water, sanitation and hygiene, education and child protection support.
“Despite efforts being made, children continue to bear the brunt of; conflict; adverse climatic conditions including one of the worst drought in years; a harsh winter; unprecedented levels of food insecurity and fragile social systems amongst others. Some 3 out of 10 children are experiencing psychosocial distress, and some 600,000 children under the age of five years are suffering from severe acute malnutrition,” highlights Adele Khodr, UNICEF Afghanistan Representative.
These resources will enable UNICEF to further enhance its support to children suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM), expand the use of mobile health clinics in remote areas and in internally-displaced camps. UNICEF will also provide education support as well as child protection services to bring back a sense of normality to children’s lives.
”With the right support, and continued commitment of our partners, we can better support the Government and people of Afghanistan to protect children during conflict, keep hope alive, and begin to prepare children to shape peaceful futures for themselves and their communities. Without significant sustained support, UNICEF will not be able to provide critical lifesaving assistance to families in need, especially children”, Khodr emphasised.
2019 marks 30 years of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and 40 years of unrest in Afghanistan. Four decades that have left an indelible impact on the country’s children. The safety and wellbeing of Afghanistan’s children is a collective responsibility from which we cannot rescind.
Notes to Editors:
Working alongside partners UNICEF aims to amongst others;
- reach 377,000 under five children with SAM, and 78,000 aged between 6 months and 5 years will receive vitamin A supplementation;
- provide safe drinking water to 300,000 people, and will install basic sanitation facilities benefiting 100,000 people to reduce the risk of water-borne disease outbreaks among most vulnerable communities;
- immunize 75,000 children against measles and provide 196,000 children and women of child bearing age with essential health services, including awareness raising;
- provide access to quality education services to 160,000 children.
- support child-friendly spaces benefitting 80,000 children for psychosocial support, and warm winter clothes and other non-food items to 200,000 people in need.
In 2018 UNICEF key achievements amongst others include:
- supplying 1 million people with water, sanitation and hygiene services
- vaccinating 13 million children against vaccine-preventable diseases
- supporting education for 1 million children
- protecting 10 million children from undernutrition
- protecting 9.9 million children from Polio
- and protecting 1/2 million children from violence, abuse and exploitation
The full report is available in English at https://www.unicef.org/appeals/afghanistan.html
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children in Afghanistan, visit www.unicef.org/afghanistan.