News from the Field
September 24, 2012
Homeless children in Afghanistan fend for themselves. They roam the streets, many ending up in juvenile rehabilitation centers. With no family support to protect them, they often experience terrible violence and abuse. UNICEF is working with partners to help these children reunite with their parents when possible, through reintegration programs that include legal assistance and psycho-social counseling. Once reintegrated with their families, these children stand a chance of leading a normal life, away from the abuse that they have faced.
September 21, 2012
The Za’atari refugee camp, located 9 miles south of the Syrian border, opened in late July to shelter the massive influx of Syrian refugees. A month later, more than 28,000 people are housed at the camp; half are children aged 18 and under. UNICEF is working to protect children and address the emotional wounds of conflict. UNICEF has built playgrounds, is operating Child Friendly Spaces, and distributing recreational and school materials. UNICEF is also planning to quadruple the number of safe places to keep up with the growing needs.
September 20, 2012
Malawi has built up a cadre of 11,000 health extension workers, who have played a key role in Malawi’s success in reducing child deaths. These ‘village doctors’ often work out of their home, with a UNICEF-supplied medical kit and using rapidSMS mobile messaging technology. They undergo an 11-week course in integrated management of childhood illnesses and are able to diagnose and treat the most common childhood illnesses. Having a village clinic ensures that children receive medical attention quickly, and within walking distance of their homes.
September 19, 2012
First Forum of Global Partnership on Children with Disabilities puts Needs of Children with Disabilities in the Forefront
UNICEF recently hosted the first Forum of the Global Partnership on Children with Disabilities. A total of 240 participants representing over 100 organizations from across the world took part to discuss how the rights and needs of children with disabilities should be prioritized in development efforts. The Forum included a high-level panel discussion on how to realize equity and inclusion for children with disabilities in the post-2015 development agenda, as the target date for the Millennium Development Goals is fast approaching.
September 18, 2012
UNICEF estimates that 1.1 million children are threatened with severe acute malnutrition in the Sahel region of Africa, which is fuelled by poverty, insecurity and lack of access to clean water. Nigeria is one of eight countries that make up this region. Yet the crisis in Africa’s most populous nation has largely been a silent one. As one of Africa’s richest oil states, Nigeria may seem a world apart from other Sahelian states like Mali or Niger. Only now is Nigeria’s place in the Sahel crisis becoming clearer to the international community.