UNICEF launches emergency appeal as thousands of children face extremely precarious situation in Indonesia

PRESS RELEASE

UNICEF launches emergency appeal as thousands of children face extremely precarious situation in Indonesia

 Appeal launched amid concerns for tens of thousands of children in aftermath of earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia

UNICEF representatives in Indonesia are available for interview

02 October 2018, DUBLIN: UNICEF Ireland has launched an emergency fundraising appeal for children impacted by the earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia. The appeal comes amid concerns that the situation for tens of thousands of children will remain extremely precarious in the days ahead.

Four days after the earthquake and tsunami devasted the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia, thousands of children and families are now in urgent need of supports.

“This devasting earthquake and tsunami has had a catastrophic impact on the island. Our immediate concern, as always, is to ensure the safety and well-being of the children and their families. Children are always the most vulnerable in disasters like this. We know that the next few days are critical, and we need urgent funds to support our work. The Irish public has been incredibly generous to children faced with emergencies like this in the past, and we hope this is the case again, ” says Peter Power, Executive Director of UNICEF Ireland.

The Indonesian government has confirmed that 1,234 people are dead with over 50,000 displaced from their homes and around 1.5 million potentially affected. It is likely that these figures will increase as more areas become accessible and the Government carries out more assessments.

UNICEF relief workers are already on the ground in the country. Items needed for distribution to affected children and families include, food (ready-to-eat meals), water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) supplies, as well as primary healthcare provisions including first aid, medicines, and female hygiene kits.

UNICEF is also working to help trace and reunite children who have been separated from their families, as well as caring for the immediate needs of children who have been orphaned and injured.

Another important rapid response support is being there for children who have experienced trauma during the earthquake and tsunami. “UNICEF’s previous experience in natural disasters, has shown that caring for these traumatised children in the right way helps them recover at a much faster rate, allowing them to better deal with the fear of aftershocks, and the grief of losing loved ones,” says Peter Power.

UNICEF is appealing for USD 5 million to cover education, health, nutrition, sanitation and child protection needs for the current emergency as well as to support the Country Office’s response in the aftermath of the Lombok earthquakes.

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Contacts

Danny Smits, UNICEF Ireland, +353871308070, danny@unicef.ie