29 September 2011

Like hundreds of thousands of other children in Pakistan's Sindh province, 11-year-old Saima has been forced from her home by severe monsoon rains and flooding.

When the monsoon rains hit, Saima's family home was destroyed by the flood waters: "We went first to an embankment above the water and made our own shelter and stayed there."

Soon after, Saima and the nine other members of her family were transported to a camp in neighbouring Thatta district, such is the shortage of dry land in their home district.

Around 2,600 people are living at Saima’s camp, with more families expected soon.

More than 11,000 schools have either been damaged or destroyed, or are not available for classes because they have been converted to relief camps.

Support from UNICEF and our partners means that at least Saima can continue her education. Some children, like Anita, (right) are in school for the first time ever.

The 35 temporary learning centres that UNICEF has set up this week are already making a difference for children like Saima. And with 4,000 further centres planned, we'll ensure that many thousands more flood-affected children don't lose out on their education.

"I like being able to keep going to school", says Saima, "and I look forward to playtime too."

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Girls enjoy an educational activity at a UNICEF-supported tent class at a relief camp for displaced families in south-west Sindh province. ©UNICEF/Pakistan/2011/Youngmeyer
Girls enjoy an educational activity at a UNICEF-supported tent class at a relief camp for displaced families in south-west Sindh province.©UNICEF/Pakistan/2011/Youngmeyer
In a UNICEF-supported tent class in flood-affected Pakistan, Anita (12) enjoys being in class for the first time in her life. ©UNICEF/Pakistan/2011/Youngmeyer
In a UNICEF-supported tent class in flood-affected Pakistan, Anita (12) enjoys being in class for the first time in her life.©UNICEF/Pakistan/2011/Youngmeyer