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Schools built every day, says UNICEF worker


DARFUR, 12 August 2004 – In one of her recent ‘frontline diary’ entries from Darfur, UNICEF Communication Officer Sacha Westerbeek talked about the ongoing campaign to keep children in school in spite of the crisis. Not only is staying in school important for continuing children’s education – it’s also a crucial way of restoring a sense of stability among those who have witnessed extreme violence and chaos.

Using a video phone link from the troubled region, Sacha reported on UNICEF’s progress in this and other areas, and says the situation is improving.
 “UNICEF has a huge, huge programme, and every single day there is a school or classroom built in Darfur where children can go,” she says. “It’s really amazing to see what a change it can make in a child’s life when they are able to go to school.”

UNICEF and the Sudan Ministry of Education are supplying canvas, plastic sheeting and steel poles for about 1,000 temporary classrooms. These are easy to transport and construct, and can accommodate about 50 pupils each.

Support for children’s education is a UNICEF priority; temporary classrooms have been built across Darfur and eastern Chad. UNICEF has also provided ‘school-in-a-box’ kits to camps where more than a million people are seeking refuge from the fighting.




08 Aug 2004: Listen to Sacha’s full report, delivered via video phone

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