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DUBLIN/PORT-AU-PRINCE, Mon 10 Oct 2016 – One week after Hurricane Matthew slammed into Haiti, and as schools re-open across the country, more than 100,000 children will miss 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 (regions) 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.
On-the-ground representatives are available for interview – Cornelia Walther in Port-au-Prince, Ruth Craig in Panama (Irish) and Executive Director Peter Power in Dublin.
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UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. UNICEF has been operating for 70 years.
To learn about UNICEF and its work for children visit https://www.unicef.ie/
For more information, please contact:
Aedín Donnelly, Communications and Media Manager for UNICEF Ireland | firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +353 1 809 0281 | Mob: +353 85 1395272
Cornelia Walther, UNICEF Haiti, +509 37 87 18 22, email@example.com
Najwa Mekki, UNICEF New York on mission to Haiti, +1917 209 1804, firstname.lastname@example.org
Marisol Quintero, UNICEF Regional Office in Panama, +507 6569 2718, email@example.com
Photo above: © UNICEF/UN035046/Moreno Gonzalez