From Timothy Olanrewaju, Maiduguri
Over 280,000 pregnant women, care givers and children under five years will be supported with maternal nutrition counselling and acute malnutrition management services with a new funding, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has said.
In a statement Wednesday, UNICEF said the intervention will be done with a new funding package from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).
“The new funding of SEK 26 million (US$ 2.7 million), to be implemented by UNICEF and partners, will also help improve access to safe water, sanitation systems and hygiene for 86,000 conflict-affected women and children in north-east Nigeria,” UNICEF disclosed.
Related: Nigeria’s troubled northwest battles child malnutrition
It said the 13 years of armed conflict in the North East has left women and children in acute vulnerability.
The global body said congestion in camps and settlements, leading to high rates of open defecation and poor sanitation practices among the affected population.
It said the fund will be used to support children, pregnant women and care-givers on water, sanitation, food security and management of malnutrition among others.
“Malnutrition, the single most deadly threat to child survival and development is dealing children in north-east Nigeria a deadly hand,” UNICEF Representative in Nigeria Peter Hawkins said.