Brahmagiri: UNICEF Odisha in partnership with Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti a national NGO today launched a Sneha Samparka Abhijan, a 45 day-intensive engagement for the care and protection of children post cyclone Fani. Present at the function here today were Dr Aurodindo Behera , IAS (Rtd) Ex add chief secretary ,Surya Narayan Mrishra Dy Director OPEPA , Dr. Monika Nielsen, Chief, UNICEF Odisha,,Lalita pattnaik , Education Speciality UNICEF ODISHA , Alka Gupta, Communications Specialist, UNICEF Odisha , SHG and PRI members from the concerned blocks and 670 children from Brahmagiri participated in the program .
“Any natural disaster hits children the hardest. They are especially vulnerable to violence, abuse and exploitation. A safe space for affected children with activities that help them cope with the trauma are important in such instances, “said Dr. Monika Nielsen, Chief, UNICEF Odisha. “Through our partnership with the National Institute for Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru, we will train community volunteers in providing necessary psychosocial support,” she added.
The campaign aims at reaching approximately 40,000 children and 10,000 adolescents between 3-14 years including from most vulnerable marginalised groups in 500 villages of Kanas, Brahmagiri and Krushnaprasad blocks of the worst affected Puri district. It includes opening of activity centres in 500 villages, training and capacity building of volunteers and community engagement.
As schools will reopen a month later, these activity centres will create child friendly spaces to engage children in activities for psychosocial recuperation. Children will be actively engaged in individual and group activities of drawing, singing, dancing, storytelling which will help them understand, express and cope with their own emotions as a result of the trauma caused by cyclone Fani.