In a glimmer of hope amidst the relentless conflict in Sudan, UNICEF has successfully relocated 297 vulnerable children from the Mygoma orphanage in Khartoum to a transit centre in a safer part of the country. This crucial operation, undertaken in collaboration with the ministries of Social Welfare and Health, aims to protect these children from the perils of the ongoing violence.
Mandeep O’Brien, UNICEF Representative in Sudan, expressed relief at the safe movement of these children, stating,
“The safe movement of these incredibly vulnerable children to a place of safety offers a ray of light in the midst of the ongoing conflict in Sudan. Many millions of children remain at risk across Sudan, threatened by the fighting, displacement, and the subsequent impact on the provision of lifesaving services—their lives and their futures are being endangered by this conflict every day.”
Under the care of the ministries of Social Welfare and Health, the relocated children are receiving essential support from UNICEF. This support includes medical care, feeding, psychosocial stimulation, play, educational activities, and assistance to caregivers.
The collaboration between UNICEF and the relevant authorities extends to identifying suitable foster families to provide nurturing environments for the children.
The transit centre, where the children have been relocated, underwent rehabilitation and preparation with the support of UNICEF. Efforts are now underway to ensure that foster families are found to provide a stable and caring environment for these young ones, who have already endured unimaginable hardships.
Sudan’s protracted violence has had a devastating impact on children and families throughout the country. More than 13.6 million children are currently in dire need of lifesaving humanitarian support—an alarming figure that marks the highest ever recorded in Sudan.
Current situation and appeal for funds
The ongoing violence continues to endanger the lives and future prospects of families and children alike, resulting in the disruption of basic services and the closure, damage, or destruction of numerous health facilities.
To address this deepening crisis, UNICEF is calling for an urgent allocation of US$838 million—an increase of US$253 million since the commencement of the current conflict in April 2023. This funding is crucial to ensure the delivery of essential services and support that can help alleviate the suffering and provide a glimmer of hope for the future.
As Sudan’s children remain trapped in the midst of conflict, the relocation of these 297 children serves as a poignant reminder of the urgent need for concerted international action.
UNICEF’s tireless efforts to protect and care for these vulnerable young lives underscore the necessity of supporting their vital work in Sudan and beyond.