Islamabad, 11 January 2023 (TDI): UNICEF has warned Pakistan that up to 4 million children in Pakistan are living next to contaminated flood waters.

Child survival remains a crisis in flood-stricken areas as children are getting affected by respiratory infections and malnutrition, especially in the province of Sindh.

Respiratory infections have stockpiled in flood-affected areas, and the death rate in children from such infections is high all around the world. According to UNICEF data 1.5 million children are facing life-threatening malnutrition.

Abdullah Fadil, UNICEF Representative in Pakistan, said that “children living in Pakistan’s flood-affected areas have been pushed to the brink.”

“The rains may have ended, but the crisis for children has not. Nearly 10 million girls and boys are still in need of immediate, lifesaving support and are heading into a bitter winter without adequate shelter.

Also read: UNICEF Official interacts with flood affectees in Pakistan

Severe acute malnutrition, respiratory and water-borne diseases coupled with the cold are putting millions of young lives at risk.”

In the worsening crisis, about 800,000 children have been screened for malnutrition of which 60,000 are identified as victims of Severely Acute Malnutrition.

This is a life-threatening stage where Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF) is referred to as treatment.

UNICEF health interventions have reached more than 1.5 million children and provided Polio immunization to 4.5 million children in 16 flooded districts.

Moreover, warm clothes, jackets, blackest, and quilts also aimed to reach nearly 200,000 affectees. While safe drinking water has been provided to one million people along with hygiene kits.

UNICEF has pledged to provide more humanitarian needs concerning health, water, sanitation, education, and shelter. Fadil added, “As families begin to return to their villages, our response has moved with them.”

He went on to say that “Our mobile health, nutrition, and water teams continue to respond to immediate lifesaving needs, while we help restore and rehabilitate existing health, water, sanitation, and education facilities, supporting the Government’s efforts in climate-resilient recovery and reconstruction.”

UNICEF Pakistan has permanent field offices in all provinces in Pakistan. UNICEF is working closely with the government of Pakistan to provide humanitarian aid to most affected areas.

Likewise, it has planned to spend US$173.5 million to provide special relief to women and children and has used 37 percent of that amount.