Building a better future for every child in East Asia and the Pacific, post coronavirus

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18 August 2020: UNICEF East Asia and Pacific issues today, “Recover, Rebound, Reimagine – Building a better future for every child in East Asia and the Pacific, post COVID-19.”

The report highlights the many ways coronavirus has further pummelled the region’s 2.2 billion people – families already struggling to put food on the table and educate their children.

The world as we know it has changed. In the space of just a few months, coronavirus has unleashed itself with alarming speed, leaving no continent or country untouched. While children are not the face of the pandemic, they are among the hardest hit.

From the start, UNICEF and its partners have been responding in full force. Not only to provide immediate support and protection to those who need it the most, but to encourage with governments and other partners, new thinking and strategies to safeguard progress for children in a post coronavirus world. What will a better future for children look like? The region’s coronavirus blueprint for action: Recover, Rebound and Reimagine, may help shape the answer.

  • Recover: restoring the provision of essential services – and scaling up successful interventions – to support children, particularly those whose underlying conditions make them even more vulnerable to infection from the virus.
  • Rebound: nurturing children’s resilience and protecting the most vulnerable. For example, supporting governments in the region to ensure cash grant payments for families and an increase in the number of beneficiaries to include the newly poor.
  • Reimagine: tapping into an experimental mind-set to tackle obstacles on the road to creating a more equitable, inclusive and resilient society, one able to better cope with tomorrow’s disasters.

As many of us start to emerge from lockdowns, there is a collective realization that ‘returning to the old normal’ is simply not going to happen. We shouldn’t go back to normal and we won’t, because normal never was.

In conclusion, the report calls for several actions, for example, scaling up and instilling the practice of handwashing as a social norm and the promotion of nutritious, safe and sustainable diets for children and their families and empowering young people to opt for a healthier, sustainable diet in a post-coronavirus world.

It also asks people to come together – we have a once in a lifetime opportunity to reimagine a better world for children. Let’s do it together. Let’s prove that we are #NotGoingBack

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Notes to editors

Together with the report, UNICEF East Asia and Pacific also releases a video that highlights the key theme of the report – #NotGoingBack – using images of the problems we faced and a vision for a better future for all children in the region.

It also calls on young people in the region on Instagram to talk about what they don’t want to go back to and share this messaging to engage people around reimaging a better tomorrow.

And working with photographers in Myanmar, Viet Nam, the Philippines and Thailand, UNICEF gathered stories of vulnerable families and children impacted by COVID-19, asking them what their hopes are for the future.

Report available in full: https://www.unicef.org/eap/notgoingback

For more information, please contact:

Marco Carraro, 0207 375 6052, MarcoC@unicef.org.uk  

Unicef UK Media Team, 0207 375 6030, media@unicef.org.uk 

About Unicef

Unicef is the world’s leading organisation for children, promoting the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

Unicef UK raises funds to protect children in danger, transform their lives and build a safer world for tomorrow’s children. As a registered charity we raise funds through donations from individuals, organisations and companies and we lobby and campaign to keep children safe. Unicef UK also runs programmes in schools, hospitals and with local authorities in the UK.

For more information please visit unicef.org.uk

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