UNICEF appeals for US$208M to support children in urgent need

EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: The UN children’s organization, Unicef has appealed for immediate access to 208 million US Dollars to support its humanitarian children with urgently needed support and services in protection, education, health, nutrition and water response in the Central Sahel for 2020.

The global child protection agency said it will render humanitarian assistance to children who are vulnerable to certain practices that violates their rights as children.

Since the start of 2019, more than 670,000 children across the region have been forced to flee their homes because of armed conflict and insecurity.

UNICEF is on the ground in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, working with partners to provide a sanitation campaign.

Marie Pierre Poirier, UNICEF’s regional director for West and Central Africa said their scrutiny showed that the situation in central Sahel cannot be looked into, but be struck by the scale of violence children are facing.  “They are being killed, mutilated and sexually abused, and hundreds of thousands of them have had traumatic experiences “she said.

The agency have estimated that across the central Sahel, over 709,000 children under 5 years will suffer from severe acute malnutrition and require lifesaving treatment this year.

Madam Poirier said in creating significant barriers for children and families trying to access essential services, UNICEF provides food and nutritional supplies – risk factors that can lead to the deterioration of childrens’ health and nutritional status.

Attacks against children have spiked over the past year, as an example, in Mali which recorded 571 grave violations against children during the first three quarters of 2019, compared to 544 in 2018 and 386 in 2017.

Madam Poirier observed this number is projected to rise as attacks against children increase in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. “UNICEF therefore deem it necessary to stand strong and provide this support to this children.”

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