21 January 2014 - Responding to vital humanitarian needs in South Sudan, the first of two UNICEF chartered planes arrived in Juba today, loaded with supplies for women and children across the country.
“This particular charter has 35 tons of equipment,” said Dermot Carty, Deputy Director of UNICEF’s office of emergency programmes. “It has supplies for water and sanitation, malnutrition and obstetric surgical equipment.”
Mr. Carty, usually based in Geneva, will be in South Sudan for a month, supporting UNICEF’s work to assist communities affected by the country’s current crisis.
“The biggest challenge at the moment is to be able to get access to those who are in need for security reasons,” he said. “To adapt to that, we are trying to be nimble and flexible. We are ready to jump through windows of opportunity when they appear.”
A 15 January report issued by the organization said UNICEF was supporting immunization campaigns for measles, polio, vitamin A and deworming, as well as cholera preparedness.
Working with the World Health Organization and UN Population Fund, UNICEF was also providing maternal, newborn and child health services, including diarrhoeal management kits, clean delivery kits and insecticide treated mosquito nets.
“As more humanitarian space becomes available, water and sanitation services are becoming critical for the survival of internally displaced people (IDPs),” the report said.
It added that UNICEF would continue to work with other partners to build latrines, address drainage issues, and promote hygiene through distribution of soap, water treatment products and buckets.