KATHMANDU, Sept 23: The French Government has provided humanitarian aid of 200,000 euros to UNICEF Nepal.
The aid to UNICEF will focus on the management of acute malnutrition in 18 flood-affected districts (Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari, Saptari, Siraha, Udayapur, Dhanusha, Mahottari, Sarlahi, Rautahat, Bara, Parsa, Nawalparasi, Rupandehi, Kapilvastu, Dang, Banke and Bardiya) through provision of Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF) for treatment of severely malnourished children.
According to a joint statement issued the Embassy of France and UNICEF office in Kathmandu on Friday, the severity of acute malnutrition among children in these districts is “critical” or “severe” as per the WHO guidelines on child malnutrition under emergencies. This fact was brought out after an assessment done following the floods.
The statement said the project will be implemented on September 2017 to February 2018 and will meet the immediate nutritional needs of 3,000 affected children.
French envoy to Nepal Yves Carmona said France is deeply saddened by the immense loss of lives and the disastrous effect the floods had on the local population.
UNICEF Nepal's Representative a.i. Dr Rownak Khan has said that the quick assessment in the 18 flood-affected districts showed that more than six percent of under-five children are suffering from severe form of acute malnutrition which increases the risk of death of these children if they are not treated quickly with appropriate food such as RUTF.
“This partnership with the French Government will enable UNICEF to work double speed with Government of Nepal and partners to improve the nutritional status of the children affected by the floods. At the same time, we will work towards ensuring that the nutritional gains the country has achieved in the last few years does not deteriorate due to the disasters," the statement further quoted Khan as saying.