The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Friday that at least 971 children (nearly 1,000 babies) would be born in Cambodia on New Year’s Day.
Foroogh Foyouzat, UNICEF representative in Cambodia, who said this in a statement, added that the children would be among a cohort of 371,504 babies to be born around the world the same day.
According to the fund, the Cambodian babies are predicted to have a higher life expectancy than the previous generations, at 81.2 years.
“We are excited that we will welcome a thousand beautiful new babies into Cambodia this New Year’s Day,” Ms Foyouzat said.
“2020 has been a challenging year for all, especially children.
“Yet, Cambodia was successful in containing the pandemic and keeping Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases lower than most countries.
“We are hopeful that the same trend can be maintained.
“UNICEF will continue to re-imagine a better world for Cambodian children to grow up in.
“Each of them deserves the chance to fulfil their potential in life,” she added.
She said UNICEF had worked to advance the rights and wellbeing of children in Cambodia since 1952.
Throughout 2020, it said, UNICEF had supported the Cambodian government and partners to respond to the COVID-19 crisis by enabling distance learning for hundreds of thousands of students.
UNICEF also supported the safe re-opening of schools for 3.2 million children, and ensured COVID-19 safety messages reached more than 10 million people.
It also provided crucial sanitation and hygiene supplies to 4 million people, the statement said.
In 2021, UNICEF’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic will move to the next stage of working with the government and the World Health Organisation (WHO) on providing COVID-19 vaccines in Cambodia.
This, according to the statement, will be done through the WHO’s COVAX facility.
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