UNICEF warns of ‘lost generation’ of Rohingya youth, one year after Myanmar exodus

UNICEF/Patrick Brown A boy carries one of the bamboo poles, which were unloaded near the settlement for use in building basic shelters, in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, on 8 July 2018.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.

The refugee crisis in Bangladesh sparked by the mass exodus of people from Myanmar almost a year ago risks creating a “lost generation” of Rohingya children who lack the life skills they will need in future, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has warned.

Hundreds of thousands of mainly Muslim Rohingya continue to live in cramped and rudimentary camps in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar, after fleeing a military operation in Myanmar that was subsequently likened to “ethnic cleansing” by the UN’s top human rights official, Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein.

According to UNICEF, the international community needs to do more to prevent some half a million youngsters “falling prey to despair and frustration”.

One key need is better education facilities, which some older children say is almost more important than food, according to Simon Ingram, Senior Communication Advisor for UNICEF.

“Now they are starting to look forward, they’re starting to wonder, ‘What next?’” Mr. Ingram said, citing a child alert issued late Wednesday. “They are starting to think, you know, what sort of future that they really have, and this is where a new level of anxiety and fear starts to come in.”

Although huge advances have been made in the living conditions of those forced to flee Myanmar, including in disease outbreak prevention, improved water provision and stronger shelters, UNICEF warns that children in Cox’s Bazar face a bleak future.

“If we don’t make the investment in education now, we face the very real danger of seeing a lost generation of Rohingya children,” UNICEF Bangladesh Representative Edouard Beigbeder said in a statement.

“Children who lack the skills they need to deal with their current situation, and who will be incapable of contributing to their society whenever they are able to return to Myanmar.”

Inside Cox’s Bazar, some 1,200 education centres were operational by July this year for around 140,000 children – a significant achievement, given the level of demand.

But there is no agreed curriculum and few learning opportunities for all those above 14 years old, problems that UNICEF is intent on resolving, by providing a higher quality education that focuses on literacy, language and numeracy, as well as “essential life-skills”.

“It’s about an insurance against a loss of a generation of children to hopelessness and despair -something that we really must avoid at all costs,” Mr. Ingram said.

“We really want to see everybody accepts that this is not a crisis that is going to go away anytime soon and that we have to plan in a more sustainable way for the future, whether that be in terms of providing water and sanitation or health care, or in need of education.”

According to the UN agency report, girls and teenagers are especially at risk of being excluded when it comes to educational opportunities in Cox’s Bazar.

It also calls on the Government of Myanmar to ensure that in Rakhine state – where more than half a million Rohingya remain ­ children from all communities have equal access to quality education.

But verifying this is challenging, given that UNICEF’s access to the state is only partial, according to Mr. Ingram, who noted that Rohingya displaced by intercommunal violence in 2012 continue to live without hope in camps located in central Rakhine.

Under an official deal signed by the UN and the Governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh in June, it was agreed that efforts would be made to create appropriate conditions for the voluntary, safe and dignified return of Rohingya refugees to their former communities.

To date, no such returns have happened, Mr. Ingram told journalists at a press briefing in Geneva.

“I think everybody would hope that the returns of the Rohingnya people to Myanmar would happen sooner rather than later, as soon as possible indeed,” he said. “But the position of the UN and UNICEF have been absolutely clear, that that can only happen when circumstances are right.”

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

‘Business as usual’ will not achieve global education goals

ECB to support only banks not Peoples

COP21 Breaking News_12 December: The New Draft Agreement!

French Prime Minister passes Stability Program and takes his ‘café’ in Brussels this June

Stress, overtime, disease, contribute to 2.8 million workers’ deaths per year, reports UN labour agency

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s speech from World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting of New Champions

Should we be worried about third-hand smoke?

Online radio and news broadcasts: Parliament and Council reach deal

Uncovered liabilities of €5 billion may render EU insolvent

Nicaragua must end ‘witch-hunt’ against dissenting voices – UN human rights experts

Reintegrating former rebels into civilian life a ‘serious concern’ in Colombia: UN Mission chief

2019 Innovation Scoreboards: The innovation performance of the EU and its regions is increasing

Solitary Britain sides with US aggressing Russia and chooses hard Brexit

Yellen and Draghi tell Trump and markets not to expedite the next crisis

ECB: Growth measures even before the German elections

Is Germany yielding to pressures for more relaxed economic policies?

Google and Apple suddenly realise that doing business in EU is tough?

Neither side stands to benefit in US-China trade spat, UN says

Can green bonds help us manage climate risk?

6 things to know about press freedom around the world

4 essential qualities for digital leaders

UN highlights profound implication of population trends on sustainable development

Nigeria: Top UN officials say more support needed to ease humanitarian crisis and rebuild lives in conflict-ravaged north-east

EU finally agreed to cut roaming charges in 2017 but criticism is always there

Checks, fines, crisis reserve: MEPs vote on EU farm policy reform

Wednesday’s Daily Brief: Diplomacy for Peace Day, #VaccinesWork, the cost of war on Afghans, tech and well-being

EU Council approves visa-free travel for Ukraine and cement ties with Kiev

Commission threatens Chinese firms with trade penalties

A Sting Exclusive: “eHealth can change many dimensions of how the healthcare area functions”, Polish MEP Michal Boni underscores from Brussels

Africa-Europe Alliance: European Commission committed to a sustainable African agri-food sector

The Fourth Industrial Revolution can close the digital divide. This is how

Polish PM chooses to focus on economy, amid questions on rule of law in Poland

Jellyfish are taking over the world – and climate change could be to blame

UN Chief ‘strongly rejects’ Guatemala decision to expel anti-corruption body

Time to measure up: 5 ways the fashion industry can be made more sustainable

Now is the time to seize ‘unprecedented opportunity’ of the Sustainable Development Forum, says ECOSOC President

ECB’s billions fortify south Eurozone except Greece; everybody rushes to invest in euro area bonds zeroing their yields

New UN Syria envoy pledges to work ‘impartially and diligently’ towards peace

Impact of high debt levels on least developed countries ‘cannot be overstated’, says UN

Humanitarian visas would reduce refugees’ death toll

How a more integrated approach could help to end energy poverty

More needs to be done to bridge the digital gender divide

How Finland is fighting fake news – in the classroom

These countries have some of the highest voter turnout in the world

EUREKA @ European Business Summit 2014: A European patent system can help European businesses lead industrial research and innovation on a global scale

Human trafficking cases hit a 13-year record high, new UN report shows

European Youth, quo vadis?

Food supply chain: A step closer to ending unfair trading

Good grub: why we might be eating insects soon

In dreams and in love there are no impossibilities

Why the ECB had to clarify it caters for the entire Eurozone not just Germany?

Moscow’s Eurasian Union lost significance after the crisis in Ukraine

Yemen war: UN chief urges good faith as ‘milestone’ talks get underway in Sweden

Why and how did ISIS and Muslim fundamentalism gain momentum this year?

A new era of computing is coming. How can we make sure it is sustainable?

How the world’s best teacher is changing lives in Africa

Human rights: breaches in Iran, Saudi Arabia and Sudan

EU to Google: How to dismantle European search engines in 13 steps

New UN bullying report calls for ‘safe, inclusive’ schools for all children

Guterres censures terrorist attacks in Nigeria, pledges UN ‘solidarity’

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s