UNICEF reaches children fleeing to Angola from violence in Congo

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More than 9,000 children who have arrived at two temporary reception centers in Dundo, northern Angola, from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) need urgent support, UNICEF said today. To date, more than 25,000 people have arrived in Angola, having fled violence in the Kasai province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

UNICEF, together with provincial authorities and other partners, is providing assistance to children and their families who arrive at the camps after days, often weeks of traveling on foot. Many children have witnessed violent attacks, others have sustained severe wounds caused by bullets or crude weapons.

“The protection of children, nutrition, access to safe drinking water and sanitation, as well as prevention of disease, have been UNICEF’s immediate concerns – and actions – since the arrival of refugees in Lunda Norte,” says UNICEF’s Representative in Angola, Abubacar Sultan.

Children waiting for the line to get water from a tank provided by UNICEF in the Cacanda reception center for refugees in Dundo, Angola * PHOTO CREDIT – UNICEF

UNICEF and partners are working around the clock to provide affected children with life-saving interventions in health, water, and adequate sanitation services. Reaching children with immunization against viruses such as measles is vital to reduce the risk of outbreaks.

In addition to the immediate life-saving interventions, UNICEF is taking action to protect 200 children who have arrived at the camps in Angola without their families. UNICEF has trained social welfare workers to register children who arrive in the camps unaccompanied or separated from their families. Registration is critical to ensure the safety of children and protect them from trafficking, abuse, and exploitation. By registering children, there is also a greater chance that they can be reunited with their families.

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