French government donates life-saving supplies to UNICEF Niger

NIGER, 30 July 2005 - The French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Philippe Douste-Blazy, arrived in Niamey, Niger this morning, accompanying an air-transport of 1.7 tons of essential drugs, including antibiotics, anti-malarials and de-worming tablets, as well as special oral re-hydration salts for the treatment of diarrhea in severely malnourished children. Later in the evening, the French government also airlifted another 35.4 tons of therapeutic milk (F75 and F100), therapeutic food (Plumpy'nut) and oral re-hydration salts to Niamey. All of these life-saving supplies were donated to UNICEF Niger, along with 2.6 tons of locally-purchased therapeutic food. These essential supplies will be used immediately by UNICEF Niger to help save the lives of vulnerable children affected by the food crisis in Niger. An estimated 160,000 children in Niger are suffering from moderate under-nutrition & another 32,000 children are suffering from severe under-nutrition.

UNICEF Niger in Action

  • UNICEF Niger has currently allocated US$1,235,400 to respond to the crisis. UNICEF works in collaboration with the Government, NGO partners (MSF, World Vision, Save the Children, Plan Intn'l, Red Cross, IFRC, SIM, BALD, ACF, HKI) & sister UN agencies (WFP, FAO, WHO), to treat children suffering severe & moderate under-nutrition & reduce the effects of household insecurity.

  • UNICEF has delivered over 41 tons of therapeutic milk and 1.5 tons of therapeutic food (Plumpy'nut) to the government & NGO partners. Therapeutic food purchases by UNICEF are supporting 10 fixed therapeutic feeding centers and 21 outreach therapeutic centers. 190 tons of Unimix are being delivered to the government and NGO partners.

  • In collaboration with WFP, 614 tons of cereals have been delivered to 62 affected villages, benefiting an estimated 200,000 people, including 40,000 children under five.

  • 900 additional tons of cereals are expected to be delivered to 90 additional villages.

  • Approximately 6 tons of seed (corn, wheat, potato) have also been provided.

Scaling Up UNICEF Response in Niger

UNICEF's immediate aims are:

  • To treat an estimated 32,000 children suffering from severe under-nutrition and 160,000 children suffering from moderate under-nutrition, so as to prevent children currently suffering from moderate under-nutrition from slipping into severe under-nutrition, and to prevent children cured from under-nutrition in therapeutic feeding centers from slipping back to under-nutrition.

  • To reinforce the capacity of the government agencies and communities to deal with the immediate and recurrent food crises in Niger.

  • To assure adequate health (e.g. measles immunization and vitamin A for all malnourished children, malaria prevention, etc.); water/sanitation (e.g. assure adequate water & sanitation facilities, provide potable water, etc.); and, protection (e.g. sensitization campaigns to avoid risks of sexual exploitation and abuse of minors & women), services for affected populations.

Funding Required

UNICEF Niger is urgently seeking US$14,616,000 to carry out these activities. Some key costs include:

  • Therapeutic food and non-therapeutic food; shipping and handling ($8,700,000);

  • Community support on under-nutrition prevention and training ($250,000);

  • Cereal bank stocks, seeds and supply for irrigated gardening ($1,000,000);

  • Essential drugs, anthropometric equipment, mosquito nets, vaccines, vitamin A and other micro-nutrients ($1,000,000);

  • Water/sanitation assessment, kits and training for families in affected areas ($800,000);

For more Information, please contact:

Mr Aboudou Karimou Adjibade, UNICEF Niger Representative
Tel: (227) 725-369 or (227) 995-262; email:

Mr Isselmou Ould Boukhary, UNICEF Niger Program Coordinator
Tel: (227) 722-841 or (227) 962-160; email:

Mr Kent Page, UNICEF Regional Communication Officer
Tel: (227) 722-840 or (227) 532-129; email: