PRESS RELEASE – UNICEF is requesting today 268 million USD to provide vital humanitarian aid to 6.3 million children in 2018 in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The call is part of a 3.6 billion USD global appeal by UNICEF to provide humanitarian assistance to 48 million children in 51 countries affected by conflict, natural disasters and other emergencies in 2018.
With 268 million USD, the financial appeal for UNICEF’s humanitarian response in the DRC is the largest in the world, except for Yemen and Syria and its neighboring countries. “The exceptional height of the appeal for humanitarian support in the DRC underscores the extent to which children in the DRC today suffer from the consequences of conflict and epidemics“, said Dr. Tajudeen Oyewale, the Acting Representative in the Democratic republic of Congo.
The rise of violence and inter-community tensions has forced more than 1.9 million people to flee their homes in 2017. The DRC has become the African country most affected by population movements, with 4.3 million displaced people in the country, including more than 2.6 million children. These children and their families are dependent on humanitarian assistance for their survival. The Provinces of Kasai, North Kivu, South Kivu and Tanganyika are the most affected.
“Violence against children needs to stop and health services and schools can function normally“, said Dr Oyewale.
In the country, more than two million children suffer from severe acute malnutrition, or 12% of the number of cases in the world. Added to this are the cholera and measles outbreaks that hit a record number of children in 2017 and whose impact is likely to expand without an adequate response.
UNICEF provides multi-sectoral humanitarian assistance to displaced people, refugees and returnees. In 2017, UNICEF and its partners assisted 1.88 million people in conflict zones, treated 210,000 severely malnourished children, vaccinated 1.88 million children against measles and assisted 763,000 people to protect themselves against cholera in high-risk areas.
In order to be able to provide a humanitarian response that meets the needs of children in the DRC in 2018, more support of donors is needed. “Last year, donors only funded 51 percent of the funds needed for the humanitarian response. If the international community does not take immediate steps to protect and provide life-saving assistance to children in the Democratic Republic of Congo, an increasingly dark future awaits them“, said Dr Oyewale.
Note for the editors
For more information, please contact:
Yves Willemot, UNICEF DRC, [email protected], +243 81 88 46 746;
Sylvie Sona, UNICEF RDC, [email protected]; +243 81 70 96 215.
Yves Willemot est le chef de l’Équipe InfoCom de l’UNICEF RDC. Plus que tout, ce qui est important pour lui c'est d'être "tous ensemble pour les enfants".
Yves Willemot is Head of the UNICEF DRC InfoCom Team. More than anything, he believes that the most important is to "be together for the children".
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