RELIEF WEB: An entire generation of children in Sudan faces a catastrophe as the war enters its second year

Country: Sudan
RELIEF WEB: An entire generation of children in Sudan faces a catastrophe as the war enters its second year
17 April 2024

Relief Web reports on the situation in Sudan: One year after the outbreak of violence, the situation remains dire, particularly for children. The crisis has led to a devastating combination of displacement, disease outbreaks, and hunger, leaving millions of Sudanese children at risk. Here's a detailed breakdown of the key points:

1. Food Insecurity and Malnutrition: Approximately 8.9 million children are facing acute food insecurity, with 4.9 million at emergency levels. Nearly 4 million children under five are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition, including 730,000 with severe acute malnutrition. The lack of access to food is exacerbating the health and well-being of children, with severe consequences for their survival.

2. Education Crisis: Sudan is grappling with one of the worst education crises globally, with over 90% of school-age children lacking access to formal education. This disruption jeopardizes the future of an entire generation, exacerbating the long-term impact of the conflict.

3. Health Risks: Hunger and malnutrition increase children's susceptibility to diseases, compounded by a significant drop in vaccination coverage due to the ongoing fighting. Disease outbreaks, including cholera, measles, malaria, and dengue, pose a significant threat to children's lives, especially among internally displaced populations.

4. Access to Basic Services: Basic systems and social services in Sudan are on the brink of collapse, with frontline workers going unpaid for a year, vital supplies depleted, and infrastructure, such as hospitals and schools, under attack. This lack of access further compounds the humanitarian crisis, leaving children and families vulnerable.

5. Child Rights Violations: The conflict has led to a five-fold increase in reports of grave violations of children's rights, including recruitment by armed forces, killing, maiming, and sexual violence. The true extent of these violations is likely higher due to access difficulties in verifying incidents.

6. Displacement Crisis: Sudan is now home to the world's largest child displacement crisis, with over 4 million children forced from their homes since April 2023. Many have sought refuge in neighboring countries, adding strain to already vulnerable communities.

7. UNICEF Response: UNICEF is providing critical services in child protection, health, nutrition, education, and more to vulnerable children and families. Urgent funding of $240 million is needed for the next six months to prevent famine and provide essential support to millions of children.

8. Call for Action: UNICEF emphasizes the urgent need for concerted action to halt the violence, facilitate humanitarian access, and provide life-saving aid. Without immediate intervention, Sudan faces a generational catastrophe with far-reaching implications for the country and the region.

The situation in Sudan underscores the urgent need for global attention and support to address the escalating humanitarian crisis and safeguard the future of millions of children.

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