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Thousands more vulnerable children are being helped after children’s charity Plan International expanded its aid programme in Myanmar.
Plan is already providing education and psycho-social support for thousands of children in IDP (internally displaced people) camps in Kachin state.
Now it has opened a new field office in Myitkyina in Kachin – with the aim of helping a further 7,000 children in 50 camps.
Aid workers are also assessing the needs of IDPs in Rakhine state, where it aims to start aid operations soon.
“Plan is expanding its humanitarian operations in Kachin and is exploring options in Rakhine,” says John McDonough, Plan’s Country Director in Myanmar
“Assessments are ongoing to identify longer-term needs and make sure key priorities are addressed.
“IDPs continue to face critical protection concerns due to the prolonged displacement and we want to ensure that all of our work reflects the needs of IDP children – especially girls,” he says.
As well as distributing food, aid workers have been holding workshops to raise awareness about the issues of human trafficking, drugs and HIV/AIDS.
Around half a million people have fled their homes over the past two years due to conflicts in the country’s border areas.
Many have been unable to return and remain living in camps, where access to health, education, water, shelter and jobs are key concerns.
Although the government has signed ceasefire agreements with several armed groups, there have been continued outbreaks of violence.
For more information on Plan’s work or to make a donation call 0800 526 848 or visit www.plan-uk.org