The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned in a recent report that the number of Haitian children in need of humanitarian aid increased by half a million over the past two years.
The numbers are increasing along with armed violence, combined with the resurgence of cholera, food insecurity and inflation, and by so, limiting access to essential services such as health, nutrition, water and hygiene and education for millions of minors and their families. For this reason, UNICEF advocates extending its support with a larger contribution.
According to UNICEF’s estimates, around 40 percent of the funds needed for humanitarian response in Haiti were received last year, the lowest fundraising for UNICEF’s emergency operation in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The organization supports vaccination efforts against cholera, reinforces the dissemination of good health practices,the access to drinking water, as well as programs for education and medical care, particularly for youngsters. However, these aids are insufficient in Haiti´s desolate scene.
“This is one of the most difficult times to be a child or adolescent in Haiti since the 2010 earthquake, and the situation is getting worse day by day,” acknowledged Garry Conille, UNICEF regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean during a recent visit to the country.
“With limited access to clean water, affordable food, basic health care and protection, children, adolescents and their families are reaching a critical point,” he added.
In the representative’s opinion, additional support is urgently needed to avoid a worse humanitarian situation in the coming months. “Humanitarian assistance (…), one of the few lifelines they have left, is a ‘cap’ that prevents the country from entering a spiral of social unrest, insecurity, instability and more poverty,” Conille said.