Meet baby Kismat
The first days of Kismat’s life have been filled with fear and uncertainty. Her mother, 18-year-old Hazera, gave birth at a Unicef-supported health centre just days after arriving at a camp for Rohingya refugees.
Before Kismat was born, Hazera and her family were forced to flee their homes in Myanmar. The family spent 10 days hiding in a forest after soldiers attacked their village. It took heavily pregnant Hazera five days to walk across the border to Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. “I was in so much pain,” she said. “I feel safe here.”
This is not the start in life that she had imagined for her daughter.
More than 680,000 Rohingya people, around 60% of them children, have fled Myanmar for Bangladesh since last August. Camps, which were already home to over 300,000 Rohingya refugees, are now overwhelmed. The lives of thousands of children like Kismat are in danger.
What is happening in Myanmar and Bangladesh?
Who are the Rohingya people?
The Rohingya are an ethnic group, mostly Muslim, who have lived in the area now known as western Myanmar for centuries.
Why are they being persecuted?
The Rohingya people are stateless, unrecognised as citizens by the Myanmar Government, and because of this they frequently face discrimination, violence and extreme poverty.
Where are the Rohingya people going?
More than 680,000 Rohingya, 60% of them children, have walked more than 40 miles to reach safety in Bangladesh. Many children walked for days and have arrived sick, exhausted and in desperate need of clean water, food and shelter.
What's happening now for Rohingya refugees?
After August 2017, thousands of Rohingya refugees fled Myanmar into Bangladesh, with thousands arriving every week in the first months, creating what is now the biggest refugee camp in the world. Unicef staff are on the ground providing life-saving services and supplies that will help prevent and treat disease, protect children from danger and exploitation, and provide a safe space to learn and play.
There’s still much more we can do
It is a huge challenge to provide the support and services the Rohingya refugees need in Bangladesh. They are spread across official refugee camps, makeshift settlements, host communities and new encampments near to the border. While some of these places have humanitarian services and basic infrastructure, they are overcrowded, difficult to access and extremely vulnerable to floods and landslides during the 6 month rainy season.
But with your help, we can reach more children like Kismat and Samira with life-saving care and protection.