UNICEF emergency supplies for Rohingya refugee children arrive in Bangladesh

 

UNICEF emergency supplies for Rohingya refugee children arrive in Bangladesh

On 15 September 2017, newly arrived Rohingya refugee children make the long journey into Bangladesh carrying all of their possessions, after their village was torched in Myanmar.  As other refugees have done, they will try to find a small square of land to build a makeshift shelter out of plastic sheeting and bamboo in Kutupalong refugee camp, Cox's Bazar district.

By 5 September 2017, more than 146,000 Rohingya refugees fled across the border from Rakhine State, Myanmar, into Cox's Bazar district, Chittagong Division in Bangladesh since 25 August. As many as 80 per cent of the new arrivals are women and children. More than 70 000 children need urgent humanitarian assistance. More than 100,000 of the newly arrived refugees are currently residing in makeshift settlements and official refugee camps that are extremely overcrowded while 10,000 newly arrived refugees are in host communities. In addition, 33,000 arrivals are in new spontaneous sites, which are quickly expanding. While some refugees are making their own shelters, the majority of people are staying in the open, suffering from exhaustion, sickness and hunger. Cox’s Bazar district of Bangladesh is one of the most vulnerable districts, not only for its poor performance in child related indicators but also for its vulnerability to natural hazards. Most people walked 50 or 60 kilometers for up to six days and are in dire need of food, water and protection. Many children are suffering from cold fever as they are drenched in rain and lack additional clothes. Children and adolescents, especially girls, are vulnerable to trafficking as different child trafficking groups are active in the region. Many more children in need of support and protection remain in the areas of northern Rakhine State that have been wracked by violence.

In Bangladesh, UNICEF is scaling up its response to provide refugee children with protection, nutrition, health, water and sanitation support. With the recent influx of refugees, demand

© UNICEF/UN0121690/Nybo

On 15 September 2017, newly arrived Rohingya refugee children make the long journey into Bangladesh carrying all of their possessions, after their village was torched in Myanmar.

DHAKA, Bangladesh/HONG KONG, 24 September 2017– A consignment of UNICEF emergency supplies for hundreds of thousands of refugee Rohingya children and their families has arrived in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka.

The cargo plane arrived from Copenhagen with 100 tons of supplies comprising water purifying tablets, family hygiene kits, sanitary materials, plastic tarpaulins, recreational kits for children and other items.

The supplies will provide urgently needed assistance to the estimated quarter of a million Rohingya child refugees who are among the 429,000 people to have fled across the border from neighbouring Myanmar in recent weeks. The refugees are now living in desperate conditions in southern Bangladesh.

“Ensuring that children and families have safe water for drinking and washing is absolutely essential in order to protect them against diarrhoea and other waterborne diseases,” said Edouard Beigbeder, UNICEF Representative in Bangladesh. “This is a very real threat given the current situation in the camps and makeshift settlements where the Rohingya are now living, especially amid the current heavy rains.”

Other consignments – consisting of  school bags, tents, early childhood development kits, family hygiene and dignity kits, tarpaulin and nutrition materials – are also on their way to Bangladesh.

The supplies will be delivered by truck to the southern city of Cox’s Bazar, where an expanding international response is mobilising to address the plight of the growing number of Rohingya refugees arriving in Bangladesh.

UNICEF is seeking HK$56.9 million in additional funding for its work in southern Bangladesh over the next three months, but additional funds will be necessary as the refugee population continues to grow.