UNICEF responding to those affected by Papua New Guinea earthquakes

05 March 2018
Emergency supplies being unloaded
UNICEF PNG/2018

UNICEF is working to respond to the needs of those affected by three huge earthquakes, measuring 7.5, 6.0 and 6.0 on the Richter Scale, and nearly 100 aftershocks, which sent four provinces in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea into a state of emergency last week. 

Initial reports and aerial assessments reveal that 65 per cent of health facilities have closed and schools have been damaged to such an extent that at least one provincial authority is considering cancelling the entire school year. 

Around 274,000 people need immediate support and 55,000 children under age five are among the most at risk. 

“UNICEF is working tirelessly to do whatever it takes to ensure the health and safety of children and families in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea,” said Karin Hulshof, UNICEF East Asia & Pacific Regional Director. “Ensuring those affected are safe and healthy with access to clean water, food and safe spaces is the number one priority.”

Access to the affected areas remains a huge challenge with huge landslides reported and telecommunications down in many areas. UNICEF has already supported the National Department of Health to deliver therapeutic foods to combat malnutrition, along with vaccines, to Hela Province thanks to airlifting support from the Government of New Zealand. 

Media Contacts

Simon Nazer

Communication Specialist

UNICEF EAPRO

Tel: +66 (0)6618833557

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