COVID-19: What UNICEF ​​is doing in Latin America and the Caribbean

Delivering vital supplies to affected countries in the region

Manuel Moreno
© UNICEF/UNI319468/Rocio Ortega
UNICEF/UNI319468/Rocio Ortega
17 April 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across Latin America and the Caribbean, UNICEF is stepping up donations of health, hygiene and education items for families and health workers in countries affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

⚡️ #COVIDー19: UNICEF is scaling up delivery of health, hygiene and education supplies across Latin America and Caribbean by @uniceflac:

Over the past three weeks, UNICEF has donated an increasing number of health, hygiene and education supplies to government institutions or families in countries across the region.

Entrega de suministros UNICEF Panamá - COVID-19
UNICEF Panamá/2020
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, UNICEF in Panama has delivered personal protective equipment to different Ministries (surgical masks - 66,000 to Health; 3,000 to Education; 4,000 to Government; and 10,000 to Social Development; gloves - 276,000 to Health and 20,000 to Social Development). Also hygiene and cleaning supplies (400 units of liquid chlorine, 360 packs of powder soap, 500 units of alcohol gel and 4,000 gloves) for the Ministry of Government, benefiting 411 adolescents deprived of their liberty.
ecuador covid
UNICEF Ecuador/2020
As part of the comprehensive response to address the health emergency in Ecuador, UNICEF made last Monday the first delivery to the Ministry of Health of nearly 80,000 units of supplies for the exclusive use of health personnel. Delivery included 38,000 surgical masks, 600 N95 masks, 30,000 surgical caps, 8,600 surgical gowns, 500 corpse handling bags, 780 glove boxes, and 250 units of 400-milliliter alcohol gel.

Items locally procured and distributed included hand sanitizer, soap, water supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) as well as masks, gowns, gloves, disposable face shields, goggles and coveralls, among others.

Haiti delivery COVID
UNICEF Haiti/2020/SSJE
In the picture, UNICEF's partner SSJE provides information about COVID-19 to children and families in Ouanaminthe, North East Department, Haiti. UNICEF in the country has started the delivery of 36 kits (health emergency, midwifery & obstetric) including essential drugs, medical supplies and equipment to the Ministry of Public Health and Population, to serve 120,000 people for three months.
Suministros entregados por UNICEF Argentina.
UNICEF Argentina/2020
UNICEF in Argentina, in coordination with the Ministry of Health, delivered nutritional and medicinal treatments to assist nearly a thousand children and pregnant women in a state of malnutrition, in the province of Salta. UNICEF is also accompanying the efforts to contain the impact of COVID19 on the educational system and guarantee the right to education for all children and adolescents in the country.
Suministros entregados por UNICEF Jamaica.
UNICEF Jamaica/2020
In Jamaica, UNICEF has donated vital sanitation and hygiene supplies and medical equipment (nebulizers) to nearly 1,700 children in 50 residential childcare facilities and 4 juvenile correctional/remand centres. In addition, 800 learning kits with recreational items for children are being provided to families in select communities in Clarendon, Bull Bay and St. Catherine that were previously or are currently affected by community-wide quarantine measures.
Uruguay Covid
UNICEF Uruguay/2020
UNICEF in Uruguay is coordinating with the National Emergency System to support and protect the most vulnerable children and their families form the virus and its secondary effects. It has donated 40,000 gloves and 5,000 bottles of alcohol gel for caregivers, who care for more than 2,000 children (some of them with severe disabilities). It has also delivered 300 hygiene supplies and recreational kits for families with children under 5 living in poverty and will deliver 2,500 more. In addition is helping children and adolescents living in sheltered homes, and migrant children through psychological support and the delivery of 135 recreational kits, with toys and games to help more than 2,500 children cope with quarantine.
Nicaragua supplies
UNICEF en Nicaragua entregó más de 1.300 kits de higiene personal al Ministerio de la Familia, Niños y Adolescentes (MIFAN), los suministros serán utilizados por personal de cuidado infantil en centros que atienden a niños y adolescentes vulnerables en el país. UNICEF también apoyó al MIFAN en la elaboración del protocolo de atención para la Línea Telefónica 133, para proporcionar información y apoyo psicosocial a niños, niñas, adolescentes y sus familias que requieren asistencia como resultado de la crisis.

Two weeks ago, UNICEF´s largest humanitarian shipment landed in Caracas, Venezuela with approximately 90 tonnes of critical health supplies, including PPE kits to enable identification of 28,000 suspected COVID-19 patients, emergency kits for 110,000 people to treat COVID-19 patients with severe respiratory problems.

Suministros entregados por UNICEF Venezuela -COVID-19
UNICEF Venezuela/2020/Ortega
 COVID-19 Arribo de suministros UNICEF Venezuela

Despite extreme market conditions and logistical constraints, UNICEF is planning to ship about 52 tonnes of vital supplies to be distributed in the coming weeks and months in Latin America and the Caribbean for the COVID-19 response.

In addition to the international shipments, UNICEF offices in the region are also searching for and procuring critical supplies in local markets to support domestic economies.

UNICEF in Colombia is working to protect migrants against COVID-19. In Arauca, Nariño, La Guajira and Norte de Santander UNICEF is setting up handwashing points at border crossings, transport terminals and shelters.
Mexico COVID
UNICEF teams in Mexico have delivered hygiene kits and information materials on COVID-19 to shelters for migrant children and adolescents in Tapachula, Tijuana and Mexicali.

“This pandemic is a moving target; needs are now growing day by day in each country across the region. Both globally and locally, our teams are searching for hygiene products and personal protective equipment to reach families and health workers with essential supplies as soon as possible.”

Bernt Aasen, UNICEF Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean.
Bolivia COVID delivery
UNICEF Bolivia/2020/Arana
UNICEF in Bolivia sent to the Tata Santiago shelter 220 water tanks (20 liters each), school bags and hygiene kits for children, and guides on how to prevent COVID-19 for parents and caregivers. The shelter is in Pisiga, a small town next to the Chile - Bolivia border, for Bolivians kept in quarantine for 14 days to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in their hometowns.

Together with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other UN agencies, governments and local partners, UNICEF is at the forefront of the fight against COVID-19 through preventative actions in affected countries, including dissemination of life-saving messaging campaigns and provision of hygiene and medical kits to health and other facilities.

Suministros entregados por UNICEF El Salvador.
UNICEF El Salvador/2020/Leiva
In El Salvador, UNICEF -as part of The Humanitarian Country Team- delivered hygiene and protection kits to attend basic needs of over 10.000 vulnerable children and families in quarantine centres. Health supplies and protection kits also have been distributed to governmental entities to be used for 2.500 health workers attending the COVID-19 emergency.
Brasil COVID
Carol Du Pre/arquivo pessoal
UNICEF en Brasil, en asociación con empresas, celebridades y organizaciones de la sociedad civil, está entregando productos esenciales de higiene y limpieza a las familias más vulnerables que viven en la calle o en refugios en los grandes centros urbanos del país, así como a la población migrante de Venezuela.

As part of the United Nations coordinated response to COVID-19, UNICEF is contributing to curb the spread of the pandemic and mitigate collateral impacts for children, women and vulnerable families, including the risks of essential social services being disrupted.

Paraguay COVID
UNICEF Paraguay/2020
UNICEF in Paraguay delivered to the Ministry of Children and Adolescents 1,900 soaps, 500 toothbrushes and brushes, 500 packages of sanitary towels, 5,000 gloves and 1,000 units of alcohol gel for the distribution of kits to families. In addition, UNICEF donated to the Ministry of Health protective equipment for health personnel such as 2,000 N95 masks, 370 gowns, 7,500 sterile gloves, 645 suits and 1,165 protective lenses.
Guatemala COVID
UNICEF in Guatemala donated 1,200 N-95 masks to be used by the Health Ministry personnel through the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (CONRED).

Earlier this year UNICEF appealed for US$48 million to support its emergency response in the region. So far, less than 15 per cent of the required funding has been received.