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.
- Chad faces a combination of rapid-onset and protracted humanitarian crises that have been exacerbated by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Some 6.1 million people, including 3 million children, will require humanitarian assistance in 2023. Armed conflict and intercommunal violence have led to increased population displacements, primarily of women and children, both within the country and from neighbouring countries. Chad remains highly vulnerable to epidemics and climatic events, including floods and droughts. It also faces a protracted food and nutritional crisis. Access to essential services remains limited.
- UNICEF will provide a timely, coordinated, life-saving multisectoral humanitarian response in provinces facing recurrent population displacement and other crises.
- UNICEF requires US$88.7 million to provide assistance to vulnerable children and women affected by humanitarian crises, with a focus on nutrition, health, WASH and protection from violence, preventing further erosion of Chad's fragile service provision systems. A systematic gender lens will be used in analysis and programme design.
Key planned results for 2023
381,000 children with severe wasting admitted for treatment
32,000 children/caregivers accessing community-based mental health and psychosocial support
214,092 children receiving individual learning materials
140,000 people accessing a sufficient quantity and quality of water
Funding requirements for 2023
Country needs and strategy
The humanitarian situation in Chad can be described as a prolonged multidimensional crisis caused by continued population displacements due to conflict, natural disasters, persistent food insecurity, high malnutrition, economic crisis and political instability. Chad ranks 190 out of 191 countries on the Human Development Index, and an estimated 6.4 million Chadians live in poverty. Following the death of the Head of State and unconstitutional transfer of power in April 2021, the country entered an 18-month transitional period expected to result in the adoption of a new constitution and presidential elections.
In 2022, there has been an increase in people fleeing conflict in the Lake Chad Basin and seeking refuge in neighbouring countries. Nearly 568,919 refugees reside in Chad and 381,289 Chadians are internally displaced. Armed conflict in the Lake Chad Basin is also limiting humanitarian actors’ ability to reach affected populations.
The nutritional situation remains alarming. The prevalence of global acute malnutrition in children under five is 10.9 per cent, including 2 per cent who suffer from severe wasting. It is estimated that 1.9 million children aged 6-59 months who are wasted will require treatment. Inadequate rainfall has led to poor agricultural production, with nearly 5.3 million people food insecure. These pressures are further exacerbated by the effect of the war in Ukraine on food prices. The government declared a state of food and nutrition emergency in June 2022. Despite progress, enormous challenges remain for vulnerable children to access quality education services across Chad, with 56.8 per cent of primary school-age children missing out on education. The number of displaced children needing access to education increased by 8 per cent between 2021 and 2022, stressing an already struggling education system.
The fragile health system is under severe pressure from outbreaks of measles and the COVID-19 pandemic and remains vulnerable to such epidemics as yellow fever, cholera and chikungunya, and to the spread of HIV/AIDS.
Climate change continues to impact Chad, increasing WASH needs across the country. The mortality rate attributable to unsafe WASH in Chad is 101/100,000, the highest in the world. In 2022, increased rainfall countrywide reached 30-year highs, with floods impacting 622,550 people. Loss of livelihoods due to flooding could worsen food insecurity and malnutrition in 2023.
More than 360,000 displaced children remain extremely vulnerable to physical and sexual violence, psychosocial distress and exploitation as well as recruitment by non-state armed groups.
UNICEF‘s humanitarian response in Chad aligns with the 2017-2023 country programme document, the Humanitarian Response Plan, and the Core Commitments for Children in Humanitarian Action. UNICEF will focus on facilitating access to essential social services (including health, nutrition, education and child protection) and strengthening national and subnational capacities to plan and respond to emergencies. Reinforcing complementarity of the humanitarian response and development programmes will remain priorities. UNICEF aims to protect children and populations affected by crises and strengthen prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse. Responses to disease outbreaks and the prevention, treatment and care of HIV/AIDS will remain crucial in 2023. UNICEF will support integrated vaccination campaigns to ensure that children are protected against measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
UNICEF will provide access to quality treatment for children suffering from severe wasting. To reduce malnutrition in the long-term, UNICEF’s response in Chad aims to increase the proportion of infants aged 0-5 months who are exclusively breastfed to 27 per cent and the proportion of children aged 6-23 months who are receiving the minimum dietary diversity to 20 per cent (by 2025).
UNICEF will remain among the first responders to crises and provide essential household items, hygiene promotion and access to safe drinking water and sanitation to reduce the risks of waterborne diseases.
UNICEF will promote improved school attendance for crisis-affected children, prioritizing girls, through access to education and provision of humanitarian cash transfers and school materials.
UNICEF will identify solutions that address the needs of women and girls, including gender-based violence prevention and response; and engage them as agents of change. The response will prioritize mental health services and community-based child protection, and support referral mechanisms for quality interventions for children released from armed groups, unaccompanied and separated children and survivors of gender-based violence and mine hazards.
UNICEF will reinforce risk communication and community engagement involving community platforms including youth and adolescents. Established feedback and complaints mechanisms will address community concerns and misinformation, informing decision-making for age-, gender- and disability-sensitive responses and enhancing accountability to affected populations.
UNICEF‘s humanitarian action is coordinated with national and local authorities, United Nations agencies and humanitarian partners, and will reinforce national emergency preparedness and response, including inter-cluster coordination. UNICEF will continue to lead the WASH, Nutrition and Education Clusters and the Child Protection Area of Responsibility.
Activities will focus on provinces affected by population displacements in the Lake Chad Basin, in eastern and southern Chad, while addressing disease outbreaks and natural disasters wherever they occur.
Find out more about UNICEF's work
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 Chad; the strategies that we are using to respond to these situations; and the donor support that is essential in this response.