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UNICEF seeks $46.7m to reach 100,000 children affected by Beirut blast

By our reporter

Aug. 14, 2020 -The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is urging the international community to help fund its appeal for 46.7 million dollars to help 100,000 children impacted by the massive blast in Beirut, official said.

UNICEF’sDeputy Representative in Lebanon, Violet Speek-Warnery, made the call at a news conference on Friday in Washington.

Speek-Warnery said “It has been nearly 10 days since the devastating explosions at Beirut’s port.

“The destruction, as you’ve all seen, is hard to fathom. And it happened in a context of an already collapsed economy, political instability and a surge in COVID-19 cases.

“UNICEF’s revised appeal to reach 100,000 children with support and assistance over the next three months is 46.7 million dollars,” Speek-Warnery said.

Speek-Warnery explained that the appeal seeks to keep children safe by providing mental health and psychosocial support, setting up child-friendly spaces in affected areas, and rehabilitating the basic essential services, among other things.

Speek-Warnery said the appeal would cover the rehabilitation of 16 damaged primary health care centres.

“The revised appeal will provide training and resources to equip thousands more adolescents with the skills they need – whether it is carpentry, or plumbing or construction – to be part of the effort to rebuild their country,” she added.

“With resources and tools provided by UNICEF, the work done so far by young volunteers, to clean debris, deliver food and water, even sew face masks – has been perhaps the most inspiring and hopeful aspect of the response thus far.”

On Aug. 4, the powerful blast took place in the port of the Lebanese capital, killing more than 170 people and injuring thousands more.

According to the authorities, the explosion was caused by 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate, confiscated by the customs services in 2014, and stored in the port since then.

Multiple countries and international organisations have already offered their assistance in dealing with the consequences of the blast.

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