UNICEF launches historic humanitarian appeal to save the lives of millions of children in Afghanistan – Afghanistan

Download photos and pages from Afghanistan here.

KABUL / KATMANDOU / NEW YORK, December 7, 2021UNICEF today launched its largest single country appeal to urgently respond to the humanitarian needs of more than 24 million people in Afghanistan, half of whom are children. UNICEF’s appeal for US $ 2 billion will help avert the looming collapse in health, nutrition, WASH, education and other vital social services for children and families.

As the humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate in Afghanistan, there are alarming disruptions in health and nutrition services, a catastrophic food crisis, drought, outbreaks of measles, acute watery diarrhea, polio and other preventable diseases, as well as the crippling onset of winter.

“The current humanitarian situation in Afghanistan is dire, especially for children. Winter has already set in and without additional funding UNICEF and its partners will be unable to reach the children and families who need us most, ”said Alice Akunga, Acting Representative of the UNICEF in Afghanistan. health systems are still strained, millions of Afghan children risk starvation and death. Others struggle to access water and sanitation, are cut off from their schools and are at increased risk of violence. As the desperation of families and children increases, UNICEF is doing all it can to save and protect children.

UNICEF estimates that one in two children under five will suffer from acute malnutrition in 2022 due to the food crisis and limited access to water, sanitation and hygiene services. Epidemics of deadly diseases continue, with more than 60,000 cases of measles reported in 2021. An estimated 8 in 10 Afghans drink bacteriologically contaminated water. In addition, 10 million children are at risk of dropping out of school if teachers’ salaries are not paid and crushing poverty levels persist. Almost 4.5 million children are in need of mental health care and psychosocial support. With harsh winter conditions, where temperatures can reach -12 degrees Celsius, families are struggling to heat their homes and keep their children warm.

Guided by humanitarian principles, UNICEF will prioritize life-saving interventions to treat children and provide other life-saving services. UNICEF’s response will help ensure the continuity of essential services by preventing the collapse of essential systems for children, while preserving hard-won gains, including protecting the rights of women and girls.

UNICEF plans to use the funds to scale up services to:

  • Treat 1 million children with severe acute malnutrition.
  • Vaccinate 10.5 million children against measles.
  • Provide drinking water to 11.5 million people.
  • Ensure 7.5 million children access education.
  • Expand the use of humanitarian cash transfers to meet the basic needs of the most vulnerable families and children.

“UNICEF strongly urges donors to support Afghan children through its humanitarian appeal,” Akunga added. “We need to remember our common humanity and do whatever it takes to keep children alive, well nourished, safe and learning. It won’t be easy, but with the lives and well-being of so many children at stake, we must rise to the challenge. We call on the international community to stand by our side, side by side, so that the children of Afghanistan can have the life and the future that is their right. “

With immediate donor support to UNICEF’s appeal in 2021, UNICEF was able to deliver life-saving services, including ready-to-use therapeutic foods to feed hungry children; transporting water by truck to the most needy communities; school supplies for children, including girls; and mobile health clinics to bring emergency medical care directly to vulnerable families and children in hard-to-reach areas provide respite for those who need it most.

Notes to Editors

New multimedia supports available:

Download the full UNICEF global humanitarian appeal here.

Media contacts

Samantha Death
Head of communications
Phone. : +93 799 98 7110
Phone. : +93 799 95 7110
Email: [email protected]

Marixie Mercado
UNICEF Afghanistan
Phone. : +41 79 559 7172
Email: [email protected]

Sabrina sidhu
Phone. : +1 917 476 1537
Email: [email protected]

Eliane Luthi
Regional Head of Communications
UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia
Phone. : +977 98010 30076
Email: [email protected]

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