Protecting children during emergencies in Haiti

Haiti has a multitude of emergency situations caused by disasters: earthquake, floods, cyclones, cholera etc. These situations worsen the already difficult socioeconomic conditions of the population.

Emergencies expose children to risks that make them even more vulnerable than usual. In emergency situations, the family and social structures that protect children are dismantled as families move to shelters, some are separated from their children and others even send their children to live with other families, which can increase the number of child domestic workers. Children are left without identity documents. Traditional values ​​systems weaken, violence increases in the shelters (rape and other abuses against children), access to basic social services is becoming increasingly difficult, and sick children do not have access to health care.

Gallery: World Vision Haiti responds with Hurricane Matthew relief

Disaster situations are even more devastating on the lives of children who are orphaned or separated from their families, victims of sexual abuse, with special needs, who have to become the head of the household, victims of early pregnancies, child prostitution, and etcetera.

Learn more about World Vision's Disaster Management Programme

The many risks children face have very serious consequences for their physical and emotional well-being. The child's protective environment becomes so weak that child survivors of disaster and their families should receive interventions tailored to their situation. Protection in emergencies allows the needs of children to be met through coping mechanisms and resilience and helps establish a routine, contributing to their return to normal life.

World Vision child protection interventions will, among others, help to identify children with special problems and meet their needs, thus supporting them and their families with basic services and family reunification within a protected environment.