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In Bangladesh, children face huge challenges from the moment they’re born. Despite progress, millions of families still live below the poverty line.

Less than 2 weeks into 2022, two fires have torn through Rohingya refugee camps in Cox's Bazar - leaving over 700 children without a home.

We're helping children get the care and treatment they need: from blankets and mosquito nets to help keep families safe and sheltered, to first aid and mental health support.

But the longer this crisis goes on, the harder it'll be for Rohingya children to learn, grow and become who they want to be. That's why we're also calling on the international community to find a long-term solution that:

  • addresses the root causes of the Rohingya crisis
  • allows for safe, dignified, and voluntary returns of Rohingya refugees to Myanmar when it is safe to do so

The impact of COVID-19

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. 

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.

Page updated January 2022

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