Humanitarian Action for Children 2019 - Madagascar

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Total people in need:

4.1 million10

Total children (<18) in need:

3.5 million11

Total people to be reached:

1.3 million12

Total children to be reached:

1.15 million13

2019 programme targets:


• 10,000 children under 5 years with SAM admitted to therapeutic treatment sites


• 1 million children under 5 years immunized against measles


• 300,000 people accessing the agreed quantity of water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene

Child protection

• 5,000 children reached with psychosocial support


• 55,000 children benefiting from pedagogical supplies Communication for development15 • 1.2 million people reached with key life-saving and behaviour change messages through the use of mass media, advocacy and social mobilization and community engagement

Cash-based transfer

• 15,000 households receiving cash transfers in emergencies to access essential goods

A range of climate- and health-related emergencies continue to affect Madagascar and pose serious risks for vulnerable children and their families. The ongoing El Niño weather phenomenon in southern Africa has resulted in lower than average rainfall in Madagascar, especially in the south, leaving 1.1 million people food insecure in 2018, including nearly 500,000 children.1 Due to evolving climatic stresses that have deepened food insecurity and made water increasingly scarce, an estimated 1.2 million people will be food insecure in 2019, including over 366,000 people facing emergency levels of food insecurity.2 The number of children suffering from acute malnutrition is set to increase, with the majority of cases expected to occur in the food insecure southern districts.3 Madagascar’s 2019 cyclone season will affect an estimated 270,000 people, including nearly 130,000 children.4 Health emergencies affecting Madagascar include the plague outbreak, as well as the recent measles outbreak, with some 15,000 measles cases reported as of December 2018, and 74 per cent of reported cases among children aged 1 to 14 years.5 In addition, socio-economic tensions are expected to increase following the 2018 general elections.

Humanitarian strategy

UNICEF will work with partners, including the Government of Madagascar and other United Nations agencies, to respond to the needs of emergency affected populations and mainstream humanitarian preparedness planning and response within the regular development programme. In 2019, UNICEF will provide life-saving humanitarian assistance in Madagascar, through a timely and effective integrated package of nutrition, health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), child protection and education services, in collaboration with government line ministries and international/non-governmental organizations. UNICEF-supported mobile teams will continue to provide life-saving health and nutrition interventions in remote disaster-affected areas. In line with the Government’s national multihazard contingency plan, UNICEF’s cluster leadership6 will enable strategic planning, coordinated response, capacity building of partners and advocacy.7 UNICEF will ensure access to basic education during disasters through the provision of temporary learning spaces, teaching and learning materials and school rehabilitation and protection services for vulnerable children. Cash-based assistance and protection initiatives will be used to facilitate a quick response to disasters and prevent families from adopting negative coping mechanisms that give rise to malnutrition, child exploitation and school dropout. UNICEF will continue to support the Government to adapt its nutrition, health, WASH, child protection, education and social protection systems to humanitarian situations.8

Results from 2018

As of 31 October 2018, UNICEF had US$4.4 million available against the US$13.5 million 2018 appeal (33 per cent funded).9 Despite the 67 per cent funding gap, UNICEF was able to respond to emergencies on time by leveraging core funds and pre-positioning supplies for health, WASH and education. UNICEF worked closely with government counterparts to integrate humanitarian response with government disaster resilience systems. Nearly 9,900 children under 5 years with severe acute malnutrition (SAM) were admitted for treatment across the country. The roll-out of the nutrition surveillance system facilitated more effective targeting of SAM cases and the provision of SAM treatment. WASH targets were met through the effective pre-positioning of supplies and strong cluster leadership, and using carry-over funds and regular resources. The target for psychosocial support was not met due to the reduction in needs after the milder than anticipated cyclone season. Communication for development reached the maximum caseload through the effective coordination of communication activities through national and decentralized communication networks. Lessons learned from previous cyclone responses helped UNICEF and partners, including the Government, respond more quickly in 2018.