Ecuador

UNICEF Ecuador Humanitarian Situation Report No.7, 08 July 2016

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Highlights

  • 407 School-in-a-Box kits have been distributed to strengthen capacities of 120 teachers and provide school supplies to 16,280 children and adolescents.

  • WASH survey in rural areas are being implemented, to provide baseline information assessment for the most affected canton, Jama, covering 56 communities and 38 schools.

  • About 1,500 children under 5 years have received support for adequate protection, promotion and support of appropriate infant and young child feeding in emergencies (IYCF).

  • A Child Protection strategy for the prevention of violence have been validated at local level and is ready to be implemented in Esmeraldas province (Muisne 3 shelter and in Chamanga) with youth and adolescents’ community support.

  • UNICEF and partners have set up four Child Friendly Spaces for over 500 children and adolescents (three in Pedernales and one in Portete)

250,000 children and adolescents need urgent assistance

350,000 people who need urgent support in WASH

663 fatalities 12 people missing 4,859 people injured

28,775 people in official shelters 80,000 people displaced

13,962 houses and public buildings affected in the urban area

15,710 houses and public buildings affected in the rural area

120,000 children with limited access to education

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs

On 16 April, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck coastal areas in northwest Ecuador causing widespread damage (720,000 people affected, of whom 350,000 are in need of urgent assistance) and loss of life (663 people dead). More than 1,800 aftershocks have been reported since the initial earthquake. On May 18th, two aftershocks took place (6.7 and 6.8 in the Richter´s scale), intensifying pre-existing vulnerabilities and inequalities. So far, the government has reported 663 fatalities, 12 missing persons, and 4,859 injured people. Up to 560 schools 1 were damaged, leaving about 120,000 children with limited access to education. Approximately 13,962 houses and public buildings affected in urban settings, while 15,710 in the rural area. There were currently 28,7752 people residing in official collective shelters with an unknown number of people living with host families or in spontaneous sites.

Currently the areas affected by the earthquake include a wide range of people located in urban and rural sectors. Even though UNICEF has identified important gaps, much of the humanitarian aid already underway is aimed at displaced people living in urban community areas. The distribution of affected rural areas as well as spontaneous sites is greatly dispersed and in some cases very remote. Ministry of Health (MoH) reports a total of 55 non-official sites, and 7 official collective shelters in Esmeraldas province, with a total of 8,733 displaced people. Immediate assistance should be provided in the current places people are residing whether on their own land, in an organized camp, spontaneous site and with a host family. Prior to the earthquake, an important part of this population was below the poverty line. The earthquake worsened the situation of high vulnerability for the poorest populations. Moreover, poor sanitation conditions in all of these places are increasing the risk of diarrhea, putting in risk the nutritional status of people, especially children. There is high risk of mosquito-borne disease such as Zika, Chikungunya, and Dengue fever, posing an immediate public health threat. Demolition and assessments of houses and infrastructures are still ongoing. However, urgent needs in terms of safe water, sanitation and hygiene; emergency and temporary shelter solutions; health; protection; food assistance and education remain important. Over the last 2 weeks, and thanks to the increase of the team in field, UNICEF has focused its attention to identify needs in rural areas, as well as in official shelters and spontaneous sites. Besides, UNICEF is compiling an action plan based on field results to address the different gaps. However, limited funding may hinder humanitarian operations.