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Belgium, 15 November 2012: The Nobel Peace Prize money will benefit children affected by war and conflicts

Children colour and draw, in a child-friendly space, in Birmad, a camp for displaced people in Mogadishu, Somalia.

BRUSSELS, Belgium, 14 November 2012 - The European Union announced today that it will use its 2012 Nobel Peace Prize money for projects helping children affected by war and conflicts across the world.

In a statement accompanying the announcement, the European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said, "The Nobel Peace Prize stands for reconciliation throughout the world. The Prize money should benefit the first hope for the future, but also the first victims of present and past conflicts: children".

Over the last 20 years, the European Commission's department for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) has been working to support children affected by conflicts around the world, in countries such as Chechnya, the Republic Democratic of Congo, Burma/Myanmar, Somalia, Colombia, Uganda, Afghanistan, Yemen, Pakistan, the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Mali, Syria, etc.

Assistance covers a large range of activities, such as providing shelter, clean water, food and the most basic household items to families that were displaced by armed clashes and lost everything. Children are given special attention to be kept from malnutrition. Education in emergencies is also a priority to provide children with a safe environment and offer them a future.

The European Commission also support projects that help children traumatized by conflict, young war victims, survivors of sexual and gender-based violence and former child soldiers. Playing, drawing or taking pictures can be simple but very efficient ways of letting out emotions and fears. By giving traumatized children psychosocial support, we help them to become children again to allow them to grow into the future generation of a peaceful country.



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