Dirty water. Something no child should have to drink. Help us provide life-saving support for Rohingya children.
When hundreds of thousands of terrified Rohingya refugees began flooding onto the beaches and paddy fields of southern Bangladesh in August 2017, it was the children – who made up nearly 60 per cent of their number – who caught many people’s attention.
Today, there are an estimated 720,000 Rohingya children in Bangladesh and Myanmar, in dire need of humanitarian assistance and protection – and looking to the outside world for help. Urgent efforts are needed to help the Rohingya children who are threatened either by the approaching cyclone season in Bangladesh or by ongoing violence and denial of their basic rights in Myanmar.
“This is a crisis without a quick fix that could take years to resolve unless there is a concerted effort to address its root causes,” said Manuel Fontaine, UNICEF Director of Emergency Programmes. Everything possible must be done to safeguard the rights of all children affected by this crisis – an obligation both Myanmar and Bangladesh accepted when they ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
“People won’t go home unless they are guaranteed safety and security, unless they have citizenship, unless they can send their children to school and have a chance of a future,” said Fontaine. The current crisis must be a turning point for coordinated action to address the longstanding violence and discrimination against Rohingya people, to restore and guarantee their rights and help them rebuild their lives. Rohingya children must not be left to languish in hopeless limbo. This is an investment in hope for every child and a better future for the region.