War, natural disasters and other crises often uproot large numbers of children and families, leaving them struggling to survive. Extreme weather events have become more frequent and more intense due to climate change, causing widespread devastation and displacement.
Children who live in a conflict or disaster zone are more likely to be living in poverty. They are more vulnerable to malnutrition and disease. And they are more likely to be out of school.
UNICEF, a global leader in humanitarian relief, responds to hundreds of emergencies every year — focusing on meeting immediate needs and mitigating harmful impacts. With a presence in over 190 countries and territories, UNICEF works with governments and other partners to mobilize a rapid and efficient response when disaster strikes.
UNICEF is committed to reaching the most vulnerable children and families wherever they are, operating in difficult conditions and hard-to-reach places. UNICEF's humanitarian emergency response activities cut across all of UNICEF's major program areas, from health and nutrition to education and child protection to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). Regional offices work with individual country offices to coordinate initiatives and interventions.
UNICEF is on the ground before, during and after an emergency to:
Emergency relief supplies can be shipped anywhere within 48 to 72 hours from UNICEF’s supply hub in Copenhagen, the largest humanitarian warehouse in the world.
UNICEF has also forged stronger ties between humanitarian work and development efforts — linking emergency relief to long term interventions to gird against future shocks. In areas affected by disaster and crisis, UNICEF makes it a priority to:
UNICEF's $9.4 billion emergency funding appeal for 2022 is the largest ever, reflecting the impact of the pandemic and other intersecting crises. Learn more about UNICEF's plan for Humanitarian Action for Children.