Save the Children and AECID activate humanitarian action in favor of the education and protection of children affected by rains and floods

  • May 08, 2023
  • Area: Climate change and DRM, Education, Humanitarian aid, Protection
  • Access to education, psychosocial support and protection will be provided to children and adolescents affected by the floods in Peru.
  • Education in emergencies is a strategic priority for Spanish humanitarian action and Save the Children in Peru

The Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) and Save the Children, as part of their humanitarian action agreement, will carry out different activities to help guarantee the right to education, psychosocial support and protection of children and adolescents and their families affected by the floods and the overflow of the main rivers in the departments of Lambayeque and Piura, in northern Peru.

The intense rains have been affecting the northern departments of Peru since the beginning of the year and worsened in February as a result of the arrival of Cyclone Yaku off the coast. This led the Peruvian government to issue a Declaration of State of Emergency for damages in 1,056 districts (55% of the national total) in the regions of Cajamarca, La Libertad, Lambayeque and Piura, previously declared an emergency due to the risk of dengue and Zika.

The National Civil Defense Institute (INDECI) reports that 48% of the people affected by the effects of the floods are children and adolescents. Some 62,025 students -56%- in Lambayeque and 35,543 -8%- in Piura have not been able to resume their classes as much of the infrastructure is damaged.

All this, together with the separation of the family structure and the social environment -many families have abandoned their homes and take shelter in shelters and relatives’ houses and, in many cases, adults have to seek livelihoods leaving minors unattended. -, causes great instability and emotional suffering in boys and girls, and increases the risk of suffering physical, psychological and sexual violence.

The activation of this humanitarian action agreement by the Spanish government will allow Save the Children to care for 3,240 people -1,029 boys, 1,071 girls, 559 men and 581 women- in a context of emergencies focused on minors, in which it will use, among others, the child protection methodology “Child Friendly Spaces” that allows reducing the impact of the crisis on the development of children and adolescents, as well as promoting their resilience and recovery, in the face of the emergency context experienced.

In these spaces, inserted in centers for displaced persons and shelters, Save the Children will carry out educational and recreational activities so that minors have access to education, supporting them so that they can recover normality , reinforcing their well-being and facilitating their immediate reintegration into a formal education program.

They will also influence schools and teaching staff – some 80 teachers will participate in the initiative – who will see their pedagogical practice strengthened in response to the needs for socio-emotional learning and well-being of children and adolescents in times of crisis.

The minors benefited will receive various kits with educational material adapted to each age group, as well as kits with basic material for school use. They will also receive psychosocial support together with their families and both they and the teachers in charge of their education will have the resources and knowledge to be able to identify possible cases of gender-based violence or others.

Families will also receive hygiene and cleaning kits and mosquito nets. Educational centers will also receive cleaning kits to try to prevent the proliferation of skin diseases, or those related to the lack of drinking water sources and adequate sanitation, especially in the case of people displaced from their homes.

According to INDECI, around 247,000 people have been affected by the heavy rains, landslides and floods in Peru, the number of people killed by the floods rises to 83 and there are 9 missing people. Some 298 health centers and more than 240 km of roads have been damaged and some 115,000 homes have been affected in the Lambayeque, Piura and Lima regions; 55% of the population of these departments is in a situation of food insecurity.

The Peruvian government’s weather forecasts for the affected districts indicate continued heavy rains until June.

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