In Bangladesh, children face huge challenges from the moment they’re born. Despite progress, millions of families still live below the poverty line. Rates of stunting due to malnutrition are among the highest in the world. Potentially life-threatening childhood diseases, such as pneumonia and diarrhoea, are common.
In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, social distancing simply isn’t possible for the 1 million Rohingya refugees who live in Cox’s Bazar. As a leading health provider there, we're doing all we can to keep children safe, protected and learning.
We're currently raising funds to help children affected by COVID-19 in Cox's Bazar and around the world - find out more about our coronavirus response in Cox's Bazar here.
Many children are at risk of trafficking, exploitation, abuse and early marriage. Others are forced by family circumstances into dangerous jobs. And, in a country heavily impacted by climate change, natural disasters such as floods, cyclones and rising sea levels pose an increasingly grave threat.
Read our blog on how Rohingya refugees and health workers have been impacted by coronavirus: 'COVID-19: Fighting An Invisible Enemy in the World's Largest Refugee camp'
Change is possible
But our programmes have proven that change is possible. We're working in the poorest and most precarious communities to help families increase food production and develop sustainable livelihoods. And we’re supporting community health workers to increase families’ understanding of good nutrition and hygiene.
Alongside the government, NGOs and private sector organisations, we’re developing a comprehensive programme to tackle stunting among children under two. And we’re using our findings to show how change can be achieved at scale.
Help for vulnerable children
We work with employers to improve conditions for working children. We create opportunities for them to study and we help families improve their livelihoods so their children don’t have to go out to work.
For the most vulnerable children – such as those with disabilities, children of sex workers, street children and children affected by HIV – we’re working with carers and communities to keep them safe.
Innovative approaches to learning
In education, we’re using innovative approaches to reach marginalised children through non-formal schooling. And we’re putting children at the heart of our work to prepare communities for natural disasters and help them adapt to climate change.