Timor-Leste

UNICEF East Timor Situation Report 26 Feb - 10 Mar 2000

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Education
UNICEF's national education database currently includes 6,404 teachers at 660 primary schools, teaching 142,149 students. The UNICEF teacher incentive (150,000 Indonesian Rupiah) for February has been paid to 4,537 teachers in eight of East Timor's 13 districts.

Construction materials (timber, cement and nails) were distributed to Viqueque, completing the first round of distribution of construction materials.

Supplementary distribution of education supplies was carried out to 12 districts (all but the Oecussi enclave). This consisted of blackboards, tins of blackboard paint, and more than 100,000 sets of pens, pencils and notebooks.

Health

UNICEF and partners launched East Timor's first major national vaccination campaign on 1 March. The campaign will protect up to 20,000 infants against serious childhood diseases such as measles, diphtheria, polio, pertussis (whooping cough), tetanus and TB. In preparation for the campaign, UNICEF and its partners have re-established the cold chain which was destroyed last September. UNICEF provided electric/kerosene powered fridges, cold boxes and vaccine carriers to all 13 districts, and is sending teams of vaccinators to work with the local NGO teams.

Water and Environmental Sanitation (WES)

In Dili district, 493 handpumps have been installed to date. Efforts are being made to involve communities in decisions on the allocation of handpumps. Implementation is ongoing in Manatuto and Ermera districts where disinfection of wells, installation of handpumps and repairs on pipe systems are being carried out by Action Contre la Faim (ACF) with material and logistics support from UNICEF.

The revised 2000 plan for WES covers 54 villages in 26 sub-districts. At the village level small entrepreneurs will be established who will receive basic tools, handpump spareparts and moulds to cast WES components. These entrepreneurs will be supervised by field monitoring assistants (FMA) drawn from the pool of sanitation workers currently employed by UNICEF. UNICEF is preparing key tools and logistics support for these FMAs.

Hygiene kits specially prepared for children aged under two years will shortly be distributed in the Dili area as part of the participatory discussion at the village level with clearly identified groups i.e. pregnant women and mothers with infants.

Child rights and protection

Support in the form of materials and prizes was provided to a local women's NGO, FOKUPERS, in running events on International Women's Day. The day included a round table discussion involving high-level members of UNTAET, the UN Transitional Administration, and Nobel laureate Jose Ramos-Horta, representing the National Council for Timorese Resistance.

Discussions were held with the District Administrator of the Oecussi enclave and NGO representatives on the viability of opening a child-friendly centre in the enclave and of supporting youth activities.

For more information on UNICEF, visit its web site at http://www.unicef.org