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Unicef provides support to Peru’s earthquake victims

LIMA, 16 August, 2007 – UNICEF has begun the distribution of lifesaving supplies to earthquake victims.

UNICEF responded to the emergency through the Ministry of Health’s National Defense Bureau by providing supplies that will help alleviate the serious situation of the victims of the earthquake that hit Peru on Wednesday.

“An immediate response is essential in order to prevent diarrhea in children, which is quite frequent when entire neighborhoods collapse, no safe water is available and sanitary conditions are very limited,” Guido Cornale, UNICEF’s representative for Peru, said. In view of such circumstances, 90,000 chlorine tablets were delivered, along with 540 large plastic containers with lids and faucets, 300 chlorine measuring device and 20,000 DPD tablets which will help provide safe drinking water to the affected children and families.

Other supplies such as 3,000 plastic spoons, 1,500 measuring jars (1 liter)  and 3,000 plastic cups (300 ml.) will allow children to receive oral rehydration therapies, in addition to 100,000 units of rehydration salts that will arrive today from Panama.

UNICEF delivered flyers for families to learn how to handle safe water (4,500), how to prevent conjunctivitis (3,000) and skin diseases (4,300), the importance of food hygiene practices (4,100) as well as recommendations to avoid pneumonia (6,500) and acute diarrheic diseases (3,300).

On education, UNICEF is exploring the distribution of school materials and and with the Ministry of Women and Social Development, a psycho-social recovery strategy for boys and girls in children-friendly shelters.

OCHA Coordinator, Gerard López, will arrive to Peru this weekend to visit the disaster areas along with the group UNETE made up by the agencies of the United Nations system. Two UNICEF officers will join this mission as well perform an in-depth analysis on the response and rehabilitation required for affected families and children.

UNICEF will assign US$ 200,000 for the immediate response and around US$300,000 for the reconstruction phase.

UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.  The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.  UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

For future information please contact:
Marilú Wiegold, e-mail mwiegold@unicef.org, telephone (511) 213-0706 / cel. (511) 9757-3218
Elsa Ursula, e-mail: eursula@unicef.org, telephone (511) 213-0745 / cel. (511) 9352-6944
Patrick McCormick, UNICEF Media New York, 1212 326 7426, pmccormick@unicef.org
Rafael Hermoso, UNICEF Media New York, 1212 326 7516, rhermoso@unicef.org
Véronique Taveau, UNICEF Media Geneva, 41 22 909 5716 vtaveau@unicef.org





16 August 2007:
UNICEF Deputy Representative in Peru Florence Bauer talks about the impact of the earthquake and the agency’s emergency response.


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