PORT-AU-PRINCE/NEW YORK/HONG KONG, 10 October 2016 – One week after Hurricane Matthew slammed into Haiti, and as schools re-open across the country, more than 100,000 children will be missing out on learning after their schools were either damaged or converted into shelters.
“At least 100,000 children today will not experience the joy, safety and stimulation that being in a classroom brings,” said Jean Metenier, UNICEF Deputy Representative in Haiti. “We need to get them back to learning as soon as possible. Hurricane Matthew took away their schools, homes and textbooks. It shouldn’t take away their sense of hope.”
According to initial national estimates, at least 300 public schools have been partially or entirely damaged in the country and many others are being used to shelter displaced families. Schools in Sud and Grande Anse departments will remain closed for at least another week.
UNICEF is working with partners to help set up temporary learning spaces and deliver school supplies. Priorities include:
- Rehabilitate damaged schools;
- Provide students and teachers with adequate school supplies, schools furniture and teaching materials; and
- Provide children with psychosocial support.