Humanitarian action for children
Helping all children in crisis, especially the most vulnerable
Children are especially vulnerable during emergencies when access to food, shelter, education, social support and health care is more difficult which in turn makes them more susceptible to disease, malnutrition and violence.
Multiple protracted emergencies in Myanmar have resulted in large numbers of internally displaced populations and members of host communities in need of sustained humanitarian support.
UNICEF is leading the WASH Cluster and leads the Nutrition in Emergencies Sector, Child Protection in Emergencies sub-sector working group and is co-leading the Education in Emergencies Sector at both that national and subnational levels in Rakhine and Kachin States. UNICEF, through these roles, participates in the Inter-Cluster Coordination Group in Yangon and relevant sub-national level coordination groups.
As a cluster lead agency, UNICEF works with the Government, national and international nongovernmental organizations and civil society partners to provide critical life-saving and life-sustaining services in nutrition, health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), child protection and education.
Our main humanitarian response in Myanmar includes:
- Health: providing access to health care services for women and children, and vaccinating children against measles and other diseases.
- Nutrition: identifying and treating moderate and severe acute malnutrition in children under five and providing micronutrient supplementation to both children and pregnant/breastfeeding women.
- Water, sanitation and hygiene: improving access to safe and sufficient quantities of water and appropriate sanitation facilities in camps and affected communities.
- Child protection: providing psychosocial support in safe community spaces, and mine risk education, helping children stay safe and thrive.
- Education: providing learning opportunities for children aged 3 to 17 years through formal and non-formal learning opportunities, ensuring children do not lose out on the chance to learn.
In 2018, UNICEF supported over 86,600 people with sustained access to safe water sources for drinking, cooking and hygiene, and over 78,000 children in conflict areas with emergency education and recreational materials.
To help the Government address the country’s vulnerability to a number of disasters, UNICEF supports strengthening national systems to respond to emergencies wherever they occur. We advocate for unimpeded access to the hardest-hit and most vulnerable groups in all parts of the country to provide support for children in need. Simultaneously, Myanmar has a long tradition of self-help, and we support communities to build on their existing resilience and strengths.