UNICEF providing learning materials for 100,000 children affected by floods
BANGKOK, 6 December 2011 – Nearly 100,000 students at more than 1,300 schools severely damaged in the recent floods will be helped to get back to learning soon due to the provision of “school in a box” kits from UNICEF, the organization said today.
The 2,500 “school in a box” kits being provided by UNICEF, which contain teaching and learning supplies such as notebooks, pencils, rulers, chalks, markers, maps and posters, will allow lessons to begin as schools are being repaired or refurbished.
The kits, each of which provides sufficient materials for one teacher and up to 40 students, are being distributed via Education Area Service Offices to small, flood-damaged schools in 39 central and north eastern provinces, including Ayutthaya, Nakhon Sawan, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani and Roi-et. All of the schools receiving kits have less than 200 students each and are located in poor and remote communities.
“The purpose of ‘school in a box’ is to ensure that children can continue to learn, even if schools are temporarily closed due an emergency or disaster such as the recent flooding here,” said Tomoo Hozumi, the UNICEF Representative for Thailand. “Getting children back to a normal routine, and back to learning, will help speed up their recovery from this disaster.”
An unusually severe and prolonged monsoon season resulted in Thailand’s worst flooding in more than 50 years. As of 6 December, parts of 13 provinces are still inundated by floodwaters, and 4.6 million people, including 1.3 million children, remain affected.
The UNICEF “school in a box” kits have been used around the world to get children back to learning both during and in the aftermath of emergencies, including the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan floods in 2010.
UNICEF has budgeted 37 million baht (US$1.2 million) to provide emergency relief and recovery assistance to flood-affected children and families in Thailand. In addition to the “school in a box” kits, the UNICEF response to date has included: