News / Africa

UN: Millions of Sudan's Children Facing Acute Crisis

Photo released by the United Nations African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) shows women and their children outside their tents at the Zam Zam refugee camp for internally displaced people (IDP) in North Darfur, Sudan, June 11, 2014.
Photo released by the United Nations African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) shows women and their children outside their tents at the Zam Zam refugee camp for internally displaced people (IDP) in North Darfur, Sudan, June 11, 2014.
Lisa Schlein

The U.N. Children’s Fund said Sudan today is home to one of the biggest children’s crises in the world. UNICEF warns conflict, displacement, and underdevelopment are putting children at risk of death, disease and disability. 

In 2003, when the conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region was on the global media map, two million people were displaced. Now, 10 years later, the situation in that conflict-stricken area has not substantially improved. But the crisis no longer generates headlines.  

Representative in Sudan for the U.N. Children’s Fund Geert Cappelaere said 1.2 million people are still displaced and another 400,000 have become newly displaced this year. About 65 percent of these internally displaced people are under the age of 18.

He said many of these children have grown up in Darfur displacement camps.  He said they are in danger of becoming a lost generation if they are unable to escape from this life.

He called the situation of most of the children dire and says children are seriously affected by a number of conflicts in the country.  

The government of Sudan and rebel factions continue to fight in Darfur.  But, unlike 10 years ago, he said inter-tribal clashes are growing.  

“Of course, we have also still the war going on in the southern states of Sudan - in Kordofan states, Blue Nile where we have an estimated 500,000 kids we have not been able to access for the last three years. We have not been able to access because a very active conflict going on between the government of Sudan’s forces and the SPLM north, Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement army in the northern sector,” said Cappelaere. 

Cappelaere said the children in these states have not been vaccinated against killer diseases for years and are at high risk. Though Sudan has been polio free since 2011, he warns this crippling disease could resurface. He said aid workers have been unable to mount polio immunization campaigns for three years in these areas of conflict.  

He said chronic underdevelopment in Sudan is hitting children hard throughout the country.  

“800,000 children today are acutely malnourished in Sudan. What is interesting is that a majority of these children are not in the conflict-affected areas. A majority of these children are in the east of the country that has been spared of much conflict over the last decade," Cappelaere noted. "So, the reason for that malnutrition is not conflict related. It has much more to do with an under-investment in basic services. An important, but sad reality.”  

Another sad reality, he said, is that children are being deprived of education.  UNESCO reports 58 million children globally are out of school, two million of them are living in Sudan.

UNICEF has spent more than $1 billion in Darfur over the past decade, but it agrees the returns from this investment are paltry. Currently, it runs more than 100 operations throughout Sudan on a shoestring budget.  The agency has received less than 30 percent of the $140 million it needs to continue its life-saving programs this year.

You May Like

Photogallery Kyiv: Russian Forces Tightening Grip on East

And new United Nations report documents human rights abuses committed by both sides in conflict More

Locust Swarms Fill Antananarivo Skies

FAO-led control efforts halted plague More

South Africa’s Plan to Move Rhinos May Not Stop Poaching

Experts say international coordination needed to follow the money trail and bring down rhino horn kingpins More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ibrahim musa ibrahim from: algenina-darfur-Sudan
June 29, 2014 7:15 PM
justice first, dont let any criminal free

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Weeki
X
August 29, 2014 2:18 AM
The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid