6,000 Children Could Die Every Day Because of COVID-19

Children are at risk of becoming the hidden victims of COVID-19 because whilst they won’t die from it they will die because of it.

In fact, 6,000 more children could die every single day as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic. That’s one child every 15 seconds.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has upended the lives of children and their families around the world. Health systems have buckled, borders have closed, supply chains are cut-off, schools are shut and businesses have closed.

Without basic hygiene supplies, clean water, food and medicine, children will struggle to survive.

Confirmed cases in Syria and Yemen, countries which have been ravaged by conflict, are deeply concerning. With limited healthcare systems, and a population who have already suffered from malnutrition, cholera and other diseases, they will struggle to fight this virus. The impact on children, from both the disease and its terrible consequences, will be catastrophic.

That is why we must act immediately to give children, and their families, access to clean water, sanitation, life-saving food and medicine so they can protect themselves during this dangerous time.

With cases rising every day and more than 180 countries affected we urgently need your support to tackle the spread and help protect vulnerable children.


Direct Consequences of COVID-19

More children will die for lack of food

With countries in lockdown and movement hampered, vital aid like food won’t get to those who need it most. In Yemen alone, over 12 million children are already in need of humanitarian assistance, with 360,000 children severely malnourished.

More children will die for lack of medical help

It’s estimated that in the worst affected countries, the pandemic could lead to almost half of all health services being closed.

Yemen’s health system is already on the brink of collapse and outbreaks of dengue fever, acute diarrhoea and cholera are all real and regular threats to children’s lives. As the pandemic wreaks its havoc, families will find it impossible to get their children to any kind of help at all.

More children will die for lack of clean water

As the virus reaches refugee camps inside Syria and along its borders in Jordan and Lebanon, the overcrowded and insanitary conditions will make it next to impossible to halt. Parents and grandparents will get sick and many children will be left with no one.

Without soap and clean water, disease will quickly take hold and the first to suffer will be the most vulnerable children of all – the sick and the weak.

Baby Jana is assessed for malnutrition using a MUAC band at a UNICEF supported health center in Aleppo Syria
Baby Jana is assessed for malnutrition using a MUAC band at a UNICEF supported health center in Aleppo Syria.

The Most Vulnerable Not Prepared

For the world’s most vulnerable children and communities, social distancing and handwashing with soap will not be easy. For some it will be impossible.

With their immune systems weakened by a lack of food, the impact of COVID-19 on for these children will be devastating. That is why around the world, UNICEF is working to provide clean water, sanitation and hygiene supplies to these communities – even in the hardest to reach areas.

But we need your support to reach more children. 

ill yemeni child asleep
At almost eight months old, baby Ali is no match for COVID-19. He’s so sick he’s in the hospital in Yemen’s capital Sana’a.

Your Donation Saves Children’s Lives

Your support really counts. UNICEF’s work is funded entirely through voluntary contributions. We can only reach the most vulnerable with your support.

Here is how your donation can protect children from Coronavirus; 

A donation of €50 could provide soap and clean water for up to 10 children – protecting them from COVID-19

€75 could provide emergency food to save 15 severely malnourished children

€150 could supply a health centre with enough medicine to treat 24 children

Other Ways to Donate

You can make a donation by phone, you can reach us on 01 809 0270, our office hours are Monday to Friday 09:00 – 17:30.

You can send your donation by post to


UNICEF Ireland,
33 Lower Ormond Quay,
Dublin D01 R283.

You can help reach more children affected by COVID-19.

Please donate today and help protect children. 

In the unlikely event that the funds raised exceed UNICEF’s funding requirements for this appeal, your donation will be directed to where the need is greatest.


A Simple Bar of Soap

Handwashing with soap is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to stop the spread of coronavirus. Yet millions of children are the world don't have access to this simple solution to protect themselves. Donate today and help provide children with urgent supplies to keep them safe and healthy.

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