© UNICEF/HQ06-2273/Bannon

People are evacuated from the Ifo Camp for Somali refugees in North-Eastern Province, Kenya. Floods and droughts have forced mass movements of children and women, threatening their welfare.


Droughts, floods and internal population displacements due to conflicts have continued to worsen the well-being and livelihood of children and women throughout the country. Malnutrition remains a key underlying factor in more than 55 per cent of all child deaths. About one third of under-five Kenyan children are chronically malnourished. The 2003 Demographic and Health Survey showed that, on average, one child under the age of five was dying every five minutes in Kenya. About one third of the almost 300 children who died every day were lost within the first month of life. Other primary causes of child deaths are diseases such as malaria, diarrhoea, respiratory infections, which are largely preventable or easily treated. HIV/AIDS still remains a challenge in Kenya. Less than half of the population has access to safe drinking water.
After disputed national elections in December 2007 civil unrest erupted, which displaced over 250,000 people and affected a total of 500,000 persons. UNICEF is responding with emergency health, water, nutritional support and family shelter supplies as well as child protection assessments and interventions.


UNICEF is a member of the Kenya Food Security Meeting (KFSM), headed by the Office of the President. The KFSM is a government-led emergency preparedness and response coordination forum. UNICEF co-chairs the sector working groups on health and nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene, and education with relevant line ministries. These sector working groups are sub-committees of the KFSM. UNICEF is also an active member of the UN Disaster Management Theme Group, where UN interventions in support of the Government are coordinated and aligned.

Health: UNICEF will procure and distribute essential emergency drugs and equipment to 200 health facilities; train 100 health workers and 250 village-level staff in immunization services and cold chain; provide 683,768 people in 10 districts with essential drug supplies; train 250 community-based health workers to promote the use of insecticide-treated mosquito nets; distribute 70,000 insecticide-treated nets to 9,000 households.

Nutrition: UNICEF will procure and distribute essential emergency food and equipment to about 400 health centres in most affected districts; train approximately 1,200 health workers in infant and young child feeding practices and the management of malnutrition.

Water, sanitation and hygiene: Some 100,000 displaced persons will be reached through the following activities: construct/rehabilitate wells and sanitary facilities in 50 schools; construct/rehabilitate 100 wells and boreholes and install handpumps to provide safe drinking water to some 25,000 individuals in permanent and return areas; train 200 local water authority management teams and 12 central teams in county/city water and sanitation assessments; and strengthen implementation and monitoring capacity, disaster preparedness and response, good governance, strategic options, rehabilitation planning and water quality testing.

Education: UNICEF will provide 50,000 schoolchildren with 1,000 educational and recreational kits that will permit them to continue their education; procure 10 tents to create a safe learning environment for 400 children; reinforce the Ministry of Education’s capacity to prepare for and respond to emergencies.

Child protection: UNICEF will strengthen youth services by focusing on sports and training youth facilitators; train community paralegals and offer advocacy services to children during the monthly mobile courts hearings; train and incorporate teachers into the psychosocial support network.

Shelter and emergency coordination: UNICEF will strengthen its own multisectoral preparedness and readiness capacity to immediately respond with comprehensive family kits to the shelter needs of 100,000 displaced persons (by conflict, floods and/or drought). In doing so UNICEF will also, through the UN Country Team’s joint approach, make every effort to develop the capacity of the Government of Kenya to deal with disaster management (from preparedness to timely and effective response as well as recovery).

Summary of UNICEF financial needs for 2008
Sector US$
Health 2,325,000
Nutrition 2,980,800
Water, sanitation and hygiene 2,123,500
Education 1,105,000
Child protection 1,700,000
Shelter and emergency coordination 1,065,000
Total* 11,299,300

* The total includes a maximum recovery rate of 7 per cent. The actual recovery rate on contributions will be calculated in accordance with UNICEF Executive Board Decision 2006/7 dated 9 June 2006.


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