UNICEF identifies priorities for children in pandemic

UNICEF Executive Board President Ambassador Rabab Fatima has identified priorities and reiterated the need for “innovation, efficiency and result oriented” actions for supporting the governments to build back better for the children in Covid19 pandemic.

She identified maintaining routine immunizations for children during the COVID-19 pandemic, safely reopening schools and scaling up digital solutions and connectivity, providing clean water and sanitation, better mental health support and psychosocial programming for children, as the priorities of UNICEF.

“UNICEF must be supported in its effort to assist our Governments to build back better for a more equitable, inclusive and greener society with a focus on innovation, efficiency and value for money,” Fatima who is the permanent representative of Bangladesh at the UN said.

She was addressing the closing segment of the four-day Annual Session of the Board in New York on Friday which ended with unanimous adoption of six decisions providing UNICEF with important strategic guidance and support for carrying forward its critical work across the world.

Underscoring the importance of supporting the countries in their SDGs implementation endeavours, Ambassador Fatima reflected that continued financial support is critical for UNICEF to carry out its mandate of saving children globally.

She also acknowledged the efforts by UNICEF to reach women, girls, and boys in crisis-affected countries with gender-based violence services, and the importance of the longer-term funding requirements for UNICEF to facilitate the linking of humanitarian and development programming.

Highlighting the multidimensional challenges facing the Children and their families due to COVID-19,  Ambassador Fatima appreciated UNICEF’s efforts to help the Governments to strengthen and expand their social protection coverage.

She further encouraged UNICEF to complement and support the work of national governments through a consultative process and effective interagency collaboration.

The closing session was addressed, among others, by Chairperson of the UNICEF Global Staff Association Noma Owens-Ibie and UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta H. Fore.

A video highlighting the work of five winning teams of the UNICEF Staff Teams Awards for 2019 was featured in the event.