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Policewomen, Social Workers Help after Quake

Policewomen And Social Workers Help Children in Aftermath of Indonesia Quake: UN

New York, Jun 5 2006 7:00PM

The first of three dozen policewomen and social workers, supported by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), have arrived on the Indonesian island of Java to monitor child rights and trafficking issues and provide psychosocial support for children in the aftermath of last month’s devastating earthquake that killed more than 6,000 people.

Speaking to reporters in New York today, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said the move was part of ongoing humanitarian efforts to assist the victims of the 27 May earthquake, which measured 5.9 on the Richter Scale and seriously affected the provinces of Yogyakarta and Central Java, displacing at least 200,000 people.

Relief operations continue to provide emergency shelter, medical assistance, clean water and sanitation, and food to survivors, and, to date, over 90 per cent of them have received treatment for their injuries from the Indonesian medical authorities and international partners, the UN Office of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a news release.

Partners in the Emergency Shelter group have distributed over 17,000 tents since last weekend, but attention is now focusing on providing families with the materials and tools they need to repair and build temporary shelters. Some 45,000 tarpaulins have been brought in, and wheelbarrows and spades will arrive in the next few days.

Around 400 tonnes of dried noodles, hi-energy biscuits and rice have been distributed to almost 200,000 people in the earthquake-affected area, and a further 860 tons of food will be delivered by UN agencies and partners, led by the World Food Programme, in the next three days, targeting 100,000 people in the most difficult areas. Food supplies from WFP have so far reached 173,000 people and a joint needs assessment is now being carried out to help determine where needs are greatest.

Fifteen children’s centres are now up and running, with the help of the Government and various UN and other organizations, OCHA said, adding that policewomen trained to monitor child rights and provide psychosocial support have been deployed to two of these centres, and more are being trained.

It is now anticipated that the worst of the emergency phase will be over in the next seven days, after which there is likely to be a period of sustained relief. During the remainder of the three-month emergency phase declared by the Government, the international community will work on early and medium-term recovery, OCHA said.


ENDS

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