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27Apr2015

Close to 1 million children severely affected in Nepal: UNICEF

 

Described as the worst in about 80 years, the 7.9 earthquake has severely affected at least 940,000 children living in Nepal according to UNICEF New Zealand. Children account for over 40% of Nepal’s population.

Repeated relief attempts have continuously been hindered by more than 60 aftershocks. The death toll has mounted up to 2000 amidst crumbling buildings. Cellphone connectivity is hampered due to towers being destroyed and there is no power either.

UNICEF Malaysia has launched an emergency response to meet the needs of affected children

Wivina Belmonte, UNICEF Malaysia representative said – “When emergencies hit – they hurt children most. With children accounting for more than 40 per cent of Nepal’s population, UNICEF, together with our partners, is rushing to deliver critical supplies to children and families in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake,”

For UNICEF, the top priority is on life-saving interventions – providing medicines, food, hygiene kits and safe water. The organization had supplies pre-positioned given Nepal’s vulnerability to earthquakes.

Ms. Belmonte further added – "Children who have survived terrible devastation such as this need urgent assistance,"

 "Many children would be in a state of shock, having lost their families and homes, and been traumatized by the earthquake and its aftershocks. We're particularly concerned about their health, due to the impact of the earthquake on food supply, water, access to medical services and sanitation systems."

UNICEF Malaysia has launched the "Nepal Earthquake Children’s Appeal" to respond to the needs of children and families most affected by this tragedy. 

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