In this situation, boys and girls are the most vulnerable and their families have to face great challenges to cover their needs. The majority of communities has been without access to safe drinking water, increasing the risk of disease transmission. What most concerns parents affected by the rains is that their children have stopped going to school because they are closed due the damage suffered.
Why school is important for girls and boys in an emergency situation?
-It can provide physical protection, it is less likely that girls are exploited sexually or economically or exposed to other risks in a safe learning environment
-It can offer a psychologically safe space where children are protected from physical damage
-It can be the vehicle for communication messages that save lives: schools may act as centers of communication of messages about washing hands, access to health care and emergency food
-Normalizes the lives of children and improves psychosocial well-being
-Restores and strengthens their protection
-The environment continues learning to ensure bright futures for them, their families, communities and countries
Francisca juega con Dyron. Ella le recuerda que pronto pasará la lluvia y regresará a la escuela.
The strength of Francisca, mother of Dyron
“Everyday my son asks me when he will go to college,” says Francisca, one of the hundreds of millions affected by the rains and flooding that began in the region of Piura in Peru in December. “He says that the rain is bad because it doesn’t let him go to school and I tell him to have patience.”
Francisca, 45 years old, lives in Piura, in Peru and her community has been isolated from the city, being unable to stock up on commodities to feed her 7-year-old son Dyron.
Dyron is a child sponsored by Plan International that enjoys learning math and wants to be a policeman but as a result of the flooding he cannot go to school due to the poor conditions of the roads and the deterioration in the schools, which have the Department of Education to postpone the beginning of classes until April 3. When they return, the twenty minutes of travel will be in turn doubled by the cracked roads.
“It rains a lot, the thunder scares us. The houses are fragile and we worry because they appear that at any moment they could fall,” she explains. The permanent risk to lose her home, Francisca finds it difficult to sell fruits she harvests since they have dropped in price and getting quality drinking water is proving difficult.
The situation that her family is exposed to worsens due to the risk of contracting dengue fever, colds, or diarrheal diseases that have increased in recent days.
However, Francisca does not lose hope to move forward. She has learned how to stimulate her son and overcome his fears and above all to dream with its own venture through the project “Preparing for Life,” in which he participates.
I am sure that this will pass and we will be able to harvest our rice and corn; with this money I can support my son.
How we are responding to this emergency?
In Plan International we are working to being humanitarian aid to 12 thousand girls and boys affected by the recent rains and flooding in Northern Peru. We delivered hygiene kits and clean water. There will be a specific emphasis made to secure the necessities of girls, with specific kits for their cleanliness.
Subsequently, we will open spaces of protection and socioemotional support so that girls and boys play and learn, free from abuse or violence. This includes the special participation of girls in the emergency response plan, to evaluate the specific risks that they are exposed to and listen to their proposal so that children can recover their lives and return to normal. Also, we will deliver kits of special feeding and hygiene for children and girls younger than 3 years. Finally, we will deliver kits to students so that they can return to school with basic tools.
SUPPORT CHILDREN AFFECTED BY THE FLOODS
Please help children affected by flooding in Piura.