Children are facing more devastating wars and disasters than ever before. Asian Mums Network brought you a series of blogs on behalf of UNICEF. Don’t forget the harrowing stories of children like Sapana, Machar, Mustapha, Munir, Khalid, Manal, Safi and so many more children even on our very own doorstep in camps in Calais.
“At least 10,000 unaccompanied child refugees have disappeared after arriving in Europe, according to the EU’s criminal intelligence agency. Many are feared to have fallen into the hands of organised trafficking syndicates.” (source: The Guardian Online)
Key facts and statistics
- Children have been killed while studying in the classroom, recovering in hospital or sleeping in their beds. Many have been orphaned, forced to become soldiers, kidnapped, raped and traumatised.
- Protecting children from violence is lifesaving in emergencies. It’s as important as water, shelter and medicine, yet it isn’t prioritised in the same way. This needs to change. Every moment we fail to act, the risk of life-shattering violence grows.
- One in ten children now live in conflict-affected areas (an estimated 230 million children).
- Last year, children made up half or more of those affected by natural disasters (some 50 million children).
- Across the world, 34 million children and adolescents are out of school in conflict-affected countries.
- In Syria, one in five schoolchildren are forced to cross lines of fire just to take their exams.
- In Gaza, the stress of the conflict and of living under blockade, unable to leave, has left an estimated 300,000 young people in need of psychosocial support. 75 per cent of children regularly experience unusual bedwetting.
- In South Sudan, around 13,000 children have been recruited and are being used by all sides of the conflict, putting their lives at risk and changing their futures forever.
- In Yemen, at least 573 children have been killed since the conflict intensified this year – more than four times the number of children killed during the whole of 2014.
- The average amount of time people spend living in displacement worldwide is now a staggering 17 years – the length of a childhood.
SyriaCrisis: 5 years in 60 seconds
At the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit in May 2016, we can change how the world responds to children in emergencies. The UK Government must make protecting children from violence a priority.
When a child’s world is turned upside down, they need leaders who will step up, keep them safe, and rally other countries to make the protection of children a priority. Tell David Cameron to protect children in emergencies.
Right now, we are asking the UK public to:
- Tell David Cameron to protect children in emergencies
- Ask your MP to call on the Foreign Secretary to sign up to the Safe Schools Declaration
- For more information on protecting children in emergencies follow this link
Blog provided by UNICEF
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