Humanitarian help given to more children than ever in 2022 – Save the Children

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The number of children needing humanitarian assistance rose more than 20 per cent this year to 149 million, with Afghanistan then the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) most severely impacted.

An analysis by Save the Children of the top seven emergencies impacting children over the past year reveals this significant rise, which the charity says is largely down to conflicts, rising hunger and the climate crisis.

In the Global Humanitarian Overview data from the UN, Afghanistan topped the list with an estimated 14 million children in need of aid in 2022, according to the analysis by Save the Children. This follows a year when conflict, the climate crisis, and economic devastation created a perfect storm of suffering for millions of children around the world.

Afghanistan was closely followed by the DRC, which has an estimated 13.9 million children in need of humanitarian assistance. Despite having the largest overall number of people in need in 2022, the DRC’s humanitarian response has received less than half of the funding target set by the UN.

‘Devastating impact on children’s lives’

Ethiopia, Yemen, and Pakistan also featured on a list by Save the Children of the seven emergencies where the highest number of children were in critical need of essential services such as food, clean water, shelter, and mental health and psychosocial support.

Globally there are now more conflicts than at any time since the end of World War Two, and they all have a devastating impact on children’s lives. Children are far more likely to die from blast wounds during a conflict than adults. In addition, children living in areas of conflict in countries such as Ethiopia, Afghanistan, DRC, and Yemen, are vulnerable to human rights abuses.

In many places, there continues to be a lack of accountability for violations against children, resulting in a climate of impunity.

Gabriella Waaijman, Humanitarian Director of Save the Children, said: “Globally, more children need humanitarian assistance to survive than ever before. This year has seen millions of children impacted by conflict, climate shocks, and economic devastation – all drivers of the worst global hunger crisis ever recorded. Natural disasters are becoming more frequent and severe, as we’ve seen in the case of devastating floods in Pakistan.

‘More funding is critical but won’t solve the issues’

“Children I spoke to who were affected by the floods in Pakistan have had everything taken away from them: their homes and their schools. Where there used to be fields of grain there is now a huge lake.

“More funding is critical, but money won’t solve the underlying issues facing children globally. We need governments to act by scaling-up humanitarian diplomacy to end these crises and facilitate humanitarian assistance to those in need.”

Source: Save the Children

Author: Simon Weedy

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