Japan contributes US$2.2 million to UNICEF’s emergency response for hurricane-affected children in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala
PANAMA CITY, 28 January 2021 - The Government of Japan has contributed $2.2 million to UNICEF’s emergency response for the most vulnerable families affected by Hurricanes Eta and Iota in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala.
The contribution will ensure that over more than 35,000 children and parents can benefit from safe and equitable access to drinking water, appropriate sanitation facilities, hygiene kits and information for hygiene promotion and handwashing, critical to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and water-borne diseases.
Additionally, in Nicaragua the support from the Government of Japan will ensure that minimal conditions for education activities in public schools are re-established, including post-trauma psycho-emotional support for children.
The devastating impacts of hurricanes Eta and Iota in Central America have left nearly 9.3 million people affected, including an estimated 3.5 million children. At the onset of the emergency thousands of families were displaced into shelters with limited access to basic water, sanitation and hygiene services, and faced heightened protection and public health risks. UNICEF, in partnership with Governments and other humanitarian partners, continues to respond to the emergency and carry out needs assessments to mitigate the severe impact of the hurricanes, particularly in hard-to-access areas.
UNICEF is urgently appealing for US$42.6 million to meet the most critical humanitarian needs of over 646,000 people, including 327,000 children, hit repeatedly by deadly floods and landslides in Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Belize. Funding gaps, however, threaten to leave thousands of children without access to humanitarian assistance. UNICEF calls upon the international donor community to scale-up its support to ensure that vulnerable children affected by hurricanes Eta and Iota are protected and have access to water, sanitation, hygiene, nutrition, health and education services.
UNICEF is expecting relief actions to continue over a prolonged period given the extent of damages in houses, schools and the barriers in accessing basic services, especially considering that in parts of the affected countries floodwaters may last another six months. Collective efforts are needed to prevent hurricanes Eta and Iota from becoming a forgotten emergency crisis and to ensure that the needs of the most affected population are addressed.
UNICEF is thankful to the Government of Japan for its generous and timely contribution.
UNICEF works in some of the world's toughest places, to reach the world's most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org/lac.