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UNICEF Aid Flows into Philippines

UNICEF Aid Flows into Philippines - School Equipment Distributed in Tacloban, Roxas

UNICEF NZ Emergency Appeal. Donate at: www.unicef.org.nz/philippines or call 0800 800 194

UNICEF is distributing School-in-a-Box and recreation kits in Tacloban and Roxas, to help restore some normality to children still living amid the chaos left by Super Typhoon Haiyan.

More than 350 'School-in-a-Box' kits arrived in Cebu on Saturday morning on a flight donated by KLM. Each kit contains enough stationery, reading material, arithmetic and numbering learning tools to supply 15,000 children aged six and up for three months.

Dennis McKinlay Executive Director at UNICEF NZ, said, “In the Philippines millions of children have been traumatised in this emergency and it’s really important to get them back into school, or at least back to learning and with a regular schedule and a safe space where they can stay during the day.

“The same applies to play. We know that in the aftermath of an emergency an important part of the healing process for children is to help them to play with other kids and have fun. Restoring some normalcy to children and their parents is vital.”

Among the supplies were also 99 large tents which will be used as school classrooms and safe spaces for children. The cargo also included recreation kits for at least 25,000 elementary and high school children aged 6 to 15. These kits comprise footballs, handballs, volleyball nets, Frisbees and skipping ropes, so that children have the opportunity to play either individually or in groups

UNICEF estimates that 1.14 million preschool and school-aged children have been displaced by the Typhoon. In addition, thousands of schools are being used as evacuation centres, so children have no place to go to school. Even when evacuees leave, the schools will need to reconstructed or completely rebuilt.

A range of pharmaceutical supplies including amoxicillin, retinol and albendazole were also in the shipment.

As UNICEF continues to distribute supplies to those areas hardest hit in the Philippines, Mr McKinlay reiterated the need for further funding, “With an estimated 12.9 million people estimated to have been affected by Typhoon Haiyan, including over 5 million children, the demands of this emergency are huge.

“New Zealanders have been incredibly generous and thanks must go to everyone who has donated. Each contribution, large or small, is critical to helping children and families to get back on their feet.

“We are still in the emergency phase, but the early recovery phase – which will focus on building back the infrastructure, the hospitals, clinics, sanitation and schools – will have to begin soon. Donations can be made at: www.unicef.org.nz/philippines


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