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Humanitarian Action for Children 2019 - Kenya

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Total people in need: 3,368,2619 Total children (<18) in need: 1,625,22610 Total people to be reached: 463,07511 Total children to be reached: 330,575

2019 programme targets:


• 13,404 children aged 6 to 59 months with severe acute malnutrition (SAM) admitted for treatment13


• 325,000 children affected by acute watery diarrhoea, malaria or measles accessing life-saving preventative and curative interventions14


• 250,000 people accessing the agreed quantity of water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene15

Child protection

• 5,575 children (52 per cent girls) provided with psychosocial support, including access to childfriendly spaces with inter-sectoral programming interventions


• 59,000 school-aged children, including adolescents (50 per cent girls), accessing formal or nonformal early learning, pre-primary, primary or secondary education16

Disease outbreaks continue to affect vulnerable populations in Kenya, with type 2 polio virus reported in Nairobi; cholera reported in 20 counties (5,796 cases and 78 deaths);1 and measles outbreaks reported in six counties (744 cases with 66 confirmed and one death).2 The country is also vulnerable to the effects of the El Niño phenomenon, which may lead to climate-related emergencies in 2019.3

New refugee arrivals continued in 2018, though in smaller numbers. Kenya is now hosting more than 468,000 refugees and asylum seekers, 56 per cent of whom are children.4 Intercommunal conflict at the border between Ethiopia and Kenya led to the crossborder displacement of children and families and affected the primary health facility in Moyale, Kenya.5 Between March and September 2018, over 800,000 people were affected by flooding, including some 311,000 people who were displaced by floods.6 While the effects of drought lessened in 2018, the global acute malnutrition prevalence rate remains critical, at between 15 and 30 per cent in Mandera, Turkana, Samburu and parts of Baringo and Marsabit. By August 2018, the total global acute malnutrition caseload for children under 5 years was nearly 511,000.7

Humanitarian strategy

UNICEF’s key humanitarian interventions in Kenya will include enhancing health outreach services in hard-to-reach areas, supporting vaccination campaigns, repairing strategic water points and conducting behaviour change communication as part of disease outbreak response. UNICEF will support the Ministry of Health and partners to respond to disease outbreaks and will provide technical support to the Cholera Task Force. Sector-level and multi-sector coordination will be strengthened, as will support for government-led efforts to deliver life-saving services.

UNICEF will increase its engagement with the devolved government system to strengthen county capacities for emergency preparedness and response. The four zonal offices in Lodwar, Kisumu, Garissa and Dadaab will continue to provide oversight and technical support to the humanitarian response. In line with the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework, UNICEF will collaborate with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to support the Government to strengthen coordination in the refugee response and develop policies that facilitate the inclusion of refugee children in national systems. Cross-border coordination will also be strengthened to enable the voluntary repatriation of refugees from the Dadaab refugee camp to Somalia and to monitor refugee influxes into Kakuma refugee camps and Moyale to facilitate timely assistance, particularly for women and children.

Results from 2018

As of 31 October 2018, UNICEF had US$14.3 million available against the US$34.2 million appeal (41.9 per cent funded).8 In 2018, UNICEF and partners reached nearly 189,000 children under 5 years with nutrition treatment, over 94,000 people with safe water and nearly 376,000 people with hygiene education. UNICEF also strengthened disease prevention and response, providing an integrated package of health services to nearly 307,000 children under 5 years. Education-in-emergencies interventions reached over 156,000 children and protection and risk mitigation services reached nearly 23,000 refugee children and children affected by natural disasters and resource-based community conflicts. Communication for development strategies were used to mobilize, engage and provide information for community response and resilience building. UNICEF continued to strengthen engagement with the devolved system of governance in Kenya, including by strengthening county capacities for emergency preparedness and response and supporting direct implementation. As part of the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework, UNICEF constructed 32 classrooms with water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities in Kalobeyei, benefiting both refugee and host community children. UNICEF also strengthened sector coordination through technical guidance, information management and joint resource mobilization, thereby enhancing preparedness and response planning, improving monitoring, facilitating best practice sharing and strengthening collaboration with implementing partners.