The Government of Japan has announced a new contribution of $2.2 million to support UNICEF Jordan’s work to keep children healthy, learning and protected during the COVID-19 pandemic and to reduce the impact on the most vulnerable families.
According to a joint statement shared with The Jordan Times on Sunday, the funding will support UNICEF’s health and nutrition, child protection, water and sanitation and social protection interventions for children and women in Jordan, including Syrian refugees.
“UNICEF, working closely with partners including the Government of Japan, is rapidly scaling up and striving to maintain continuity of programmes at this time, while also responding and adapting to the pandemic and its impact on the most vulnerable,” said Tanya Chapuisat, UNICEF Jordan representative.
“We are very grateful for the continued support from the people of Japan, which is helping children in Jordan to survive and thrive,” she added in the statement.
Japanese Ambassador to Jordan Hidenao Yanagi said: “Japan always stands by Jordan as a friend even during difficult times. We attach also great importance to the role of UNICEF in providing humanitarian assistance to vulnerable Jordanians and refugees in various sectors such as health, WASH [water, sanitation and hygiene] as well as protection.”
“Given the increasing threat of COVID-19, it is critically important to enhance humanitarian responses, particularly in the health and WASH sectors. I sincerely hope our assistance will be of help to address the unprecedented crisis as well as to mitigate risks of transmission in the refugee camps and host communities,” he commented in the statement.
The generous contribution from the Government of Japan will enable UNICEF to scale up water, sanitation and hygiene facilities in schools across Jordan, as well as support the provision of safe water and sanitation to vulnerable Syrian refugees living in remote areas and refugee camps, the statement said.
Since the outbreak of COVID-19, UNICEF has distributed soap to 120,000 refugees and carried out mass hygiene awareness campaigns, the statement noted.
UNICEF’s partnership with the Government of Japan is also supporting life-saving efforts with the Ministry of Health to deliver health and nutrition services to children in refugee camps and provide routine and catch-up immunisation services to children and mothers across the country.
As communities are disrupted by COVID-19, children already at risk of violence, exploitation and abuse have become even more vulnerable. The support from Japan will also provide much-needed child protection services to prevent violence and strengthen the protection response for women and girls, the statement read.
The Government of Japan is a “long and valued partner” of UNICEF in Jordan and has provided funding of over $36 million since the beginning of the Syrian crisis to support UNICEF’s work to strengthen national systems and provide lifesaving services for children, according to the statement.