Unicef Seeks Urgent Funding for Pakistan

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According to report published by Daily Dawn, Unicef is urgently appealing for $135.6 million from global donors to meet the pressing humanitarian needs of over 5.5 million individuals in Pakistan, with a focus on assisting 3.4 million children. The call for funding, outlined in a new Unicef report, aims to address critical ongoing challenges stemming from the nutrition crisis following the 2022 floods and to continue aiding Afghan populations seeking refuge in Pakistan.

This financial assistance is earmarked to facilitate safe water and sanitation for 1.3 million people, offer essential health and nutritional services to 5 million individuals, and ensure 18,000 children have access to education, whether formal or informal.

The report underscores that with full funding, Unicef aims to extend life-saving humanitarian aid to 15 percent of the most vulnerable children in Pakistan. The allocated funds will be directed towards crucial areas such as health, nutrition, water sanitation and hygiene, education accessibility, and protection, including preparedness for potential crises or population movements.

This appeal also includes a specific allocation of $35 million to support Afghan refugees in accessing health services, nutrition support, education, and protection for children. Unicef emphasizes the necessity for multi-year and flexible funding aligned with the commitments of the Grand Bargain—an agreement aiming to enhance humanitarian aid’s efficiency and reach the people in need more effectively.

Highlighting Pakistan’s susceptibility to climate change and its resultant disasters, the report stresses that climate-related issues exacerbate the country’s humanitarian challenges. The aftermath of the catastrophic 2022 floods, which affected 33 million individuals, still lingers in districts struggling with limited access to essential services, significantly impacting children’s well-being.

The report underscores that despite extensive relief efforts post-floods, continued support is vital, particularly in the most affected districts, to address hunger, disease outbreaks, and protect the most vulnerable children from further risks.

The urgency for funding lies in the intersection of climate change impacts, ongoing nutritional crises, and limited access to education, all of which pose significant threats to the well-being of children and families in Pakistan. Without sufficient and timely financial aid, Unicef and its partners will be unable to provide essential health services, nutritional support, prevent school dropouts, and protect children from violence, exploitation, and abuse.

Acknowledgement: Daily Dawn

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