UNFPA distributing Dignity Kits, calling for increased support to girls and women affected by Cyclone Roanu
UNFPA distributing “Dignity Kits”, calling for increased support to girls and women affected by Cyclone Roanu
1 June 2016, DHAKA, Bangladesh:One week after cyclone Roanu hit the southern and southeastern coastal regions of Bangladesh, adolescent girls and women remain among the most severely affected groups. Following a Joint Needs Assessment undertaken with the leadership of the Government, a clearer picture of the destruction and the needs of the affected people has been revealed. The total 1.3 million people living in the 7 hardest hit districts include about 350,000 women and girls of reproductive age. The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) estimates that around 30,000 of them are pregnant or lactating mothers. These women are in need of special attention and care for safe and clean delivery, including the services of a professional birth attendant and access to 24/7 Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care in case of complications.
For girls and women who lost many of their belongings such as clothes, accessing humanitarian relief and other critical services can be restricted, as some of them told the UNFPA field staff deployed in the cyclone-affected areas that they are too ashamed to go out in public. UNFPA has therefore started distribution of initially 2,000 “Dignity Kits” to the most vulnerable girls and women in the most affected areas. The kits include clothes, as well as essential hygiene supplies such as toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, soap and sanitary pads. A flashlight and whistle in the kit provide additional safety to the girls and women against risks of violence. Dignity kits help women and girls maintain their dignity during humanitarian crises, which is essential to maintaining self-esteem and confidence, and important to cope with stressful situations.
A Joint Response Plan, led by the Humanitarian Coordination Task Team (HCTT), is calling for donors to step up efforts to support the Government in helping citizens in the cyclone affected areas. UNFPA has calculated that a minimum of USD 1.2 million is needed to ensure that reproductive health needs of the most affected are met and that adequate measures are taken to prevent and address Gender Based Violence in the aftermath of this disaster. UNFPA is moreover ready to hand over 7,800 “Safe Delivery Kits” to support Government efforts in ensuring that women can deliver their babies in a clean and safe environment.
For enquiries and further information contact: Dr. Nadia Rahman, Humanitarian Response Specialist, +88 01730335890, Ms. Asma Akther, firstname.lastname@example.org+88001711673555