Humanitarian Action for Children
UNICEF’s Humanitarian Action for Children appeal helps support the agency’s work as it
provides conflict- and disaster-affected children with access to water, sanitation, nutrition,
education, health and protection services. Return to main appeal page.
Cox’s Bazar District is hosting over 855,000 Rohingya refugees from Myanmar. A plan for their voluntary and sustainable return is being explored, though past attempts have been unsuccessful.
Two years into the crisis, with the support of the Government, donors and humanitarian partners, necessary infrastructure and basic services have been established and are generating substantial improvements in children's well-being. Global acute malnutrition rates have dropped from 19 to 11 per cent, and 90 per cent of children aged 4 to 14 years have access to learning centres.
However, significant challenges remain. The quality of education requires further improvement. Shelters made of bamboo and tarpaulin remain highly susceptible to fire and damage during monsoons and cyclones. While access to water has improved, there are persistent issues with quality – 70 per cent of household water samples are contaminated. Overall vulnerability and social tensions in host communities require additional investments and a district-wide approach.
Families across Bangladesh are also extremely vulnerable to flooding due to cyclones and monsoons, a situation that is exacerbated by the growing effects of climate change. The July 2019 floods affected 7.6 million people across half of the country.
Key planned results for 2020
338,034 people accessing a sufficient quantity of safe water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene
293,750 children accessing quality education
32,000 adolescents aged 15 to 18 years and youth aged 19 to 24 years accessing vocational skills training
Funding requirements for 2020
UNICEF’s humanitarian response in Bangladesh is aligned with the 2020 Joint Response Plan and the 2019 Humanitarian Response and Recovery Plan. In 2020, UNICEF will prioritize:
- providing life-saving health and nutrition services for children and pregnant women;
- operating water networks and improving sanitation infrastructure and technology and hygiene promotion;
- improving access to integrated quality education and skills, including for adolescents and children with disabilities and piloting the Myanmar curriculum;
- increasing access to protection services, including structured psychosocial support, and addressing violence, exploitation and abuse, including gender-based and sexual violence;
- disseminating protection and peacebuilding messages through various media and household visits; and
- strengthening feedback mechanisms for improved accountability to affected populations.
UNICEF will strengthen the linkages between its humanitarian response and development programmes to achieve sustainable results in refugee camps and host communities. Integrated skills development for refugee and host community adolescents and youth will focus on resilience-building. UNICEF will invest in preparedness across the country, including in Cox’s Bazar, respond to the massive floods of 2019 and prepare for any new humanitarian needs. UNICEF leads the nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sectors/clusters and the child protection sub-sector/cluster and co-leads the education sector/cluster.
Humanitarian Action is at the core of UNICEF’s mandate to realize the rights of every child. This edition of Humanitarian Action for Children – UNICEF’s annual humanitarian fundraising appeal – describes the ongoing crises affecting children in Bangladesh; the strategies that we are using to respond to these situations; and the donor support that is essential in this response.