Save the Children Federation

Save the Children is the world's leading independent organization for children. Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. Our mission is to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.
Mar 31, 2016

Yemen's Conflict - A Matter of Life and Death

Yemen
Yemen's Children Suffering in Silence

One year since the conflict in Yemen escalated, nearly 90 percent of children now need emergency humanitarian aid, yet the desperate plight of 10 million children is still being largely ignored.

Save the Children warns that international governments are exacerbating the crisis and endangering children’s lives by choosing to support military action while ignoring the devastating consequences for civilians.

“An entire generation of children – the future of Yemen – is being abandoned to their fate,” says Edward Santiago, Save the Children’s Country Director in Yemen.

“For millions of children here, the terror of airstrikes and shelling, and the destruction of everything around them has become a daily fact of life. This must not be allowed to continue.

“Even before the current crisis spiraled, Yemen was already the poorest and least developed country in the Middle East, but now thousands more children’s lives are at real risk as long as the fighting continues and the delivery of vital humanitarian aid and commercial supplies continues to be obstructed.”

A new Save the Children briefing note, Yemen’s Children Suffering in Silence, illustrates how a year of war has created a humanitarian crisis that ranks as one of the worst in the world, with most areas facing extreme, and often deadly, shortages of medicine, food and fuel.

“A doctor at a Save the Children-supported hospital in Sana’a told us how a newborn baby died last month during a power cut when incubators shut down for an hour and there was no fuel left to run the back-up generators.” says Santiago.

“Other health facilities we work with report running out of even simple materials such as sterile bandages, antibiotics and iodine, and have all reported cases of potentially fatal conditions doubling, or in some cases tripling, over the past six months, including malaria, severe acute malnourishment, respiratory problems, and diarrhea.”

A recent assessment by Save the Children health and nutrition teams in Sa’ada also found critical shortages of therapeutic foods, which are used to treat malnourished children.

“One in three Yemeni children under five are now acutely malnourished, with nearly 10 million without access to clean water and more than eight million no longer having access to even basic health care,” says Santiago, adding that around 600 hospitals and health facilities have had to shut down due to damage or shortages.

An estimated six boys and girls killed or injured every day of the conflict, and civilians made up 93 percent of casualties when explosive weapons were used in populated areas during 2015—the crisis in Yemen has had a devastating psychological impact on children.

"Worryingly, children are increasingly being recruited into armed groups, abducted and detained, and at risk from thousands of newly-laid landmines.”

Nearly half of school-age children are now also out of school in Yemen, with an average of two attacks on schools per week of the conflict, and more than 1,600 schools now closed or being used as emergency shelters for families who have fled their homes.

Despite the enormous needs, the UN Humanitarian Response Plan for Yemen was only 56 percent funded in 2015, and so far is only 12 percent funded for this year, with no funding at all received for education or child protection.

“Rich nations are turning a blind eye to children’s suffering, and in some cases are even making billions of dollars by selling weapons that continue to be used against civilians,” says Santiago.

“UN Security Council resolutions are being ignored and the conflict goes on with complete disregard for international law and the protection of civilians, particularly children. There needs to be much more aid to those suffering, and much more diplomatic pressure on those fighting in Yemen to end the conflict.”

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Mar 8, 2016

Healthy Habits for Kids

Healthy Habits for Kids
Healthy Habits for Kids

Save the Children, in partnership with private donors, is pleased to announce the 2015 quarterly report on “Healthy Habits for Kids”. We are grateful for the opportunity to provide children in Bolivia a chance to develop healthy habits for a better future.

A total of 254 children in health and nutrition clubs were trained to strengthen their leadership capacities and their knowledge in health and nutrition. This enabled them to support the massive activities that their schools organized such as the cleanliness traffic light, the Cultural Hour, handwashing campaigns, health recesses, and health fairs.

Since the beginning of the project, 32 health clubs have been set up in support of the promotional activities carried out by the health and nutrition commissions.

To date, 100 teachers have been trained. The trained teachers of the health commissions organized activities to disseminate what they learned in their schools using different strategies such as providing training to the children from the health clubs, disseminating information during cultural activity hours, and supporting the reinforcement of activities by child leaders from health clubs. We also provided 299 classrooms with 8,216 children access to safe water through filter systems.

Mar 8, 2016

Child Protection in Bolivia: 2015 Highlights

Child Protection in Bolivia: 2015 Highlights
Child Protection in Bolivia: 2015 Highlights

The project’s objective is to respond to the main problems and challenges the country faces in the area of Child Protection. The specific objective of the project is that teens aged 14 to 18 years old who are in conflict with the law improve their access to justice, including restorative justice, in the nine states of the country.

Here are some of our 2015 highlights:

In 2015, 50 of the 110 teens living in Cometa (5 girls and 45 boys) participated in the baseline study. The project also helped 53 of Cometa’s teens improve their knowledge about their fundamental rights and duties. The findings of the baseline will allow us to gauge progress as we continue working directly with the teens who are incarcerated at Cometa.

“I kept on thinking about the question that I was asked – What are the rights you have as adolescents? – I thought that because I had committed a crime I had lost all my rights.” 15-year-old adolescent of the center Cometa who participated in the baseline study. December 2015.

Another priority is to engage parents of incarcerated teens with the proper resources that they need. Working with families is particularly challenging. For instance, only 40% of the parents visit their children, mostly on Sundays. Accordingly, we will need to develop innovative strategies to be able to reach out to them and achieve our set goals, since it is evidently very important for teens to have their families’ support so they can overcome their current situation and go on with productive lives once they have regained their freedom.

Another objective set for 2015 was to establish strategic partnerships with authorities. The project has been recognized by major organizations and authorities at the national level. Strong partnerships have been formed and project actions have been planned jointly. Moreover we are starting collaborations with the Ministry of Justice, the Plurinational Service of Public Defense, the State’s School of Judges and the Plurinational School for Public Management.

“We, the Ministry of Justice and Fundamental Rights, know that we will not be able to resolve all the problems that the justice system is currently facing alone. There are not many organizations that want to get involved in this topic. This is why we are open regarding this project to work in collaboration with Save the Children.”

 

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