UNICEF in Bosnia provided furniture and supplies for over 200 migrants and refugees, including 51 children, who were transferred from Sarajevo to a refugee center near Mostar, southern Bosnia last week.
50 mattresses, 1,300 bed linens and pillows, 60 tables, 300 chairs and toys were donated to the Salakovac refugee center thanks to the flexible funding in the area of child protection from the Swedish International Development Agency, which allowed UNICEF to initiate its humanitarian response in Bosnia in a timely way and support refugee and migrant children and their families as well as unaccompanied and separated children.
Migrant and refugee children and women, especially those without documentation, are vulnerable to trafficking, abuse and exploitation. In transit and destination countries, migrants and refugees and their families often find themselves victims of discrimination, poverty, and social marginalization, said UNICEF in Bosnia.
“The fact that that we had available and flexible (i.e not project-specific) funding for child protection allowed UNICEF in Bosnia and Herzegovina to react quickly to provide necessary supplies to the children in need. I would like to thank Sweden and to reaffirm UNICEF’s commitment to protecting the most vulnerable girls and boys,” said UNICEF Representative in Bosnia, Geeta Narayan.
“Due to longstanding good relationship between the Embassy of Sweden and UNICEF in BiH, on supporting justice for children, I am proud that Sweden was able to provide thematic support which enables UNICEF to respond to emergencies involving children,” said Head of the Swedish International Development Agency, Marie Bergström.
UNICEF said it plans to establish child-friendly spaces at the Salakovac center, in Sarajevo, and in the northern Bosnia towns of Bihać and Velika Kladuša, together with partners.