Arrival of 5,000 cartons of ready-to-use therapeutic food to replace items lost in the recent fire at UNICEF warehouse

15 September 2020
Un manutentionnaire déplaçant un palette d'aliments thérapeutiques prêts à l'emploi

Kinshasa, September 15, 2020 - A shipment worth US$210,000 arrived today to help treat nearly 6,250 children under five in the priority health zones of Sankuru, Kongo-Central, Kasai-Oriental and Lomami, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

UNICEF lost vital supplies for children in a fire that destroyed its warehouse in August 2020 in the capital Kinshasa. Among the items lost in the fire there were thousands of ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTFs) that are crucial for the treatment of children under five suffering from uncomplicated severe acute malnutrition. In its efforts to replace lost items, UNICEF received a shipment of 5,000 cartons of RUTF on Monday, September 14, 2020 via a special humanitarian flight.

According to the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS-Palu 2018), the nutritional situation in DRC is worrying, despite the efforts made in recent decades to improve the nutritional status of children under 5 years. Almost one in two children under five suffer from stunting, while 2% of children under five (equivalent to 1 million children) suffer from severe acute malnutrition. Evidence shows (Lancet 2013) that a child suffering from severe acute malnutrition is 4 to 9 times more likely to die than a healthy child.

UNICEF supports the Government of DRC in the management of severe acute malnutrition through, among other things, the provision of nutritional inputs. UNICEF will continue to replace the nutritional items lost in the fire.

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