Regional El Niño Preparedness and Response Chapeau for East and Southern Africa Region

November 2023 - April 2024

Children walking in the streets of a completely flooded neighborhood in Madagascar


Protecting Vulnerable Children & Communities from Severe Impacts of El Nino in Eastern and Southern Africa

As climate change escalates, so are its impacts on children.

Vulnerable communities in Eastern and Southern Africa are now facing extreme weather conditions such as floods, due to the onset of El Nino in the region. To meet the needs of children and communities impacted, UNICEF has mobilized a plan for immediate lifesaving response and longer-term measures to support countries in the region with early preparedness and response.

Reinforced with valuable lessons from past experiences and with the mission to safeguard children and young people, the response focuses on sustainable and adaptive measures that center children at the heart of humanitarian action.

To support children and communities in navigating the challenging months ahead:

  • UNICEF is supporting affected families with an integrated package of life-saving services—health, nutrition, WASH, education, social protection, and child protection. This holistic approach ensures that the unique needs of these vulnerable groups are met. These include protection against sexual abuse and exploitation, community engagement, and gender-responsive and disability-inclusive interventions, are reinforced across all sectors.
  • In addition to immediate relief, UNICEF is collaborating with partners to build climate resilience by reinforcing local response, strengthening community capacity, and prioritizing sustainable, climate-smart solutions. Partners play a pivotal role on the ground, mobilizing the most vulnerable, gathering feedback, and monitoring results. This aims to alleviate the burden on already over-stressed systems, responding to multiple emergencies such as conflict, drought, displacement, floods, and public health crises.

Through a comprehensive and collaborative approach that leverages partnerships and collaborations with stakeholders, UNICEF aims not only to respond to immediate needs but also build resilience and ensure a sustainable future for communities affected by El Niño and other longer-term impacts of climate change.

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