20 June 2021 - Mozambique, Syria, Yemen

Almost 35 million children are on the run, they need the world's full support

After the UN said an unprecedented 82.4 million people across the globe are displaced, some 42 percent of whom are younger than 18, Save the Children released the following statement.


Gabriella Waaijman, Global Humanitarian Director at Save the Children, said:
“While many of us were bound to our homes because of the COVID-19 crisis, almost 35 million children were on the run, across the globe. Forced from their homes by storms and floods, devastating droughts, relentless conflict and by the impacts of the pandemic.”

“We come across displaced people almost daily, after they fled their communities with hardly any possessions. In Syria, Yemen, in the Sahel region. Often, children are travelling alone after they lost their families in the chaos, as we’ve recently seen in Mozambique where children faced atrocities as they fled. In Mozambique alone, hundreds of thousands have been driven from their homes over the past year, adding to the global record highs of people being displaced in their own country.”

Antonio*, a 15 year old boy from the province of Cabo Delgado on northern Mozambique, recently told Save the Children:

“When I arrived in Pemba, I looked around for people I knew, and I didn’t see anyone. I didn’t see my friends or family. There weren’t many people on the boat, because most of them were still in the bush.”

Ms Waaijman continued: “Children who have fled their homes have also lost family and friends, or have been forced out of school. These things can have a deep impact on children, and they need support to cope with their loss and their new situation.”

“We are on the eve of the biggest global hunger crisis of the 21st centrury, the climate crisis is crippling livelihoods and conflicts are relentless. The world must come together to help children face this triple threat, or we are bound to see the numbers rise.”

“We need to tackle the root causes – working towards ceasefires, tackling the climate crisis, battling inequality. But until then, displaced people need our full support with shelter, clean water, cash, safety. Governments need to immediately and fully fund responses to support people who were forced to leave their homes through no fault of their own.”

*name has been changed to protect identity

Content from Mozambique available here

For more information or interview requests please contact:

Rik Goverde, Rik.Goverde@savethechildren.org; +44 7732 602 301

Media@savethechildren.org.uk, +44 7831 650 409



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