Child protection from violence, exploitation and abuse

Child protection in emergencies

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© UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0009/Jeoffrey Maitem
On 5 January, a child surveys land damaged by Tropical Storm Washi, in Hinaplanun, a village in the coastal city of Iligan, Northern Mindanao Region, The Philippines.

When an emergency strikes, whether a sudden onset natural disaster or an armed conflict, children require special protection to ensure their safety and well-being. UNICEF’s global mandate for children specifically provides for a focus on protecting children from the immediate and long-term effects of emergencies.  

UNICEF’s actions to protect children in emergencies are varied and far-reaching and form part of UNICEF’s core commitments for children in humanitarian action. UNICEF’s objectives are to actively prevent children from being harmed; to monitor violations committed against them; and to develop programmes to respond to instances where children are at risk of or have been subjected to violence, exploitation or abuse.  

Though devastating, emergencies can provide opportunities to work with governments to ‘build back better’ and strengthen systems, including through legal reform, policies and capacity building.  

Further information on UNICEF’s initiatives and activities to protect children in emergencies can be accessed through the links below:  

  • Child recruitment, release and reintegration .Thousands of children are associated with armed forces and armed groups around the world. UNICEF is committed to working with governments and armed groups to eradicate this practice.
  • Gender-based violence (GBV). The scope and brutality of GBV, especially sexual violence during conflict and in the wake of natural disasters requires immediate action. UNICEF works to protect women and children from all forms of GBV; provide survivors with holistic assistance; and generate lasting change to end GBV.

 

 

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