Situation Overview and Humanitarian Needs
Senegal reported its first confirmed COVID-19 case on March 2, and since our last report issued on August 17, 2020, a total of 3,007 new confirmed cases and 58 new deaths were reported. This is a cumulative of 15,459 and 320 cases and deaths, respectively. Dakar region remains the epicenter with 77 per cent of confirmed cases. A decline in cases have been reported since our last report, however, the organization of major events (e.g. religious pilgrimaged of the Grand Magal of Touba and Kaolack) gathering millions of people raised concerns in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. The government of Senegal remained on high alert to prevent and contain the virus. Furthermore, schools reopened partially on 25th June, starting with examination classes, and the new academic year is now due to resume on 12th November. UNICEF continued to support the Government in the implementation of the country’s COVID-19 national response plan.
Limited access to essential services such as health, nutrition, information on disease and prevention measures, water and sanitation and child protection still affects the most vulnerable and marginalized people in society particularly, pregnant women, youth, infants and persons with disabilities. With regards to education, some 3.5 million children have been affected by school closure nationwide, a situation which has disproportionately affected girls and exacerbated disparities, and hindered progress towards the inclusion of the about 1.5 million children who were already out of school before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Additionally, only 12 per cent of children have access to distance learning.These children will be facing additional challenges staying enrolled in school and completing their studies when the new academic year will start in November.