In Australia and around the world, the growing number of extreme weather events are impacting the lives of children. In Somalia, drought is reducing access to food and safe water. In Pakistan, floods are destroying schools and health centres. Here at home, bushfires are disrupting education.
Our research tells us the psychological effects of climate disasters are having an impact on children and affecting their chance to reach their full potential. Every child deserves to grow up in a safe, clean and healthy environment
Here are three innovative ways you are making a difference to ensure children are climate resilient and prepared for the future.
How is UNICEF responding to the climate crisis?
In Somalia, boreholes are supporting displaced people to return home
Life for farmer Abdirizak and his young family in rural Somalia has not been easy in recent years. Without rain, 3.5 million people have been facing acute water shortages. Like many others, Abdirizak’s family was forced to leave their home, schools and community in constant search of fertile land. The family rely on 230 goats, sheep and camels for milk, meat and income.
"My children’s future is with them [the animals]."
But there is hope yet. Thanks to some innovative engineering, UNICEF is supporting families in Somalia by constructing 400m deep boreholes in rural communities. They boreholes are sustainable and improve the ability of people and systems to anticipate, adapt to and recover from the negative effects of climate change.
“Now that there is water, my whole family can stay close by. This borehole is like an oasis.” says Abdirizak.
Thanks to our generous supporters, Abdirizak now has constant access to fresh and clean water to take care of his land, animals and most importantly, his children.
Climate is the biggest threat facing the world's children today. Protect them in a changing climate by donating today.
In Mongolia, innovative construction mean children can breathe clean air again
In most parts of Mongolia, children and families like local mother Handarmaa and her young son live in ‘Ger’s,’ a round wood or plastic hut that supports the traditional nomadic way of life. In the centre is a round ‘chimney’ for a coal-fired stove, used for cooking and to stay warm in near freezing temperatures year-round. The impact of greenhouse gases is resulting in air pollution rates in urban areas of Mongolia that are 24 times higher than acceptable standards worldwide.
UNICEF is working with leading international and local scientists to develop a country-wide solution: the CHIP (cooking, heating, and insulation products) package. CHIP replaces the coal-fired stove with a fuel-efficient electric heater, air filtration system, and extra layers of windproof and waterproof insulation around the Ger. CHIP helps to reduce health risks like pneumonia and in young children and pregnant women, preventing serious effects on brain and lung development.
"With CHIP, we have put away our stove. It saves us time and money. We no longer need to buy coal. I’m grateful that my younger son is now growing up in a better environment."
households across Mongolia have solved air quality challenges using CHIP in 2023.
local kindergartens in Mongolia have solved their heating and air quality challenges by using CHIP in 2023.
In Yemen solar farms are transforming lives
Amidst one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world, Yemen is also one of the most water-scarce nations due to the impacts of climate change. With a large portion of Yemen’s population living in poverty, families do not have enough money to pay for the fuel necessary to transport clean drinking water to their rural districts. These conditions are putting children at a higher risk of malnutrition, cholera and death from common infections, as well as affecting access to nutritious food.
But UNICEF is working to change that. Local engineer Mohammad who lives in Dhamer, Yemen is excited about the ongoing benefits of a unique UNICEF-supported climate solution that is transforming lives and already secured clean water for 137,000 people including schools, health centres and communities.
The farm takes existing water pumping systems and solarises them to produce enough energy on a regular basis to run the pumps needed to access safe and clean water for entire communities. This renewable resource requires a high up-front cost, but it provides a continuous, adaptable and reliable energy source, building climate resilient infrastructure in the community.
"The benefits are universal. It’s a public service that benefits everyone."
Thanks to the support of people like you, UNICEF has implemented 150 solar powered water projects across Yemen, reaching 2.5 million people this year alone.
The climate crisis is a child rights crisis
UNICEF is working with our supporters to build sustainable futures for every child. Ensuring that our children inherit a liveable planet is just as essential as providing emergency relief during times of disasters.
Stay up-to-date on UNICEF's work in Australia and around the world
20 Sept 2023
This is what climate change looks like around the world
Over one billion children around the world are at extremely high risk of the impacts of climate change. That is nearly half of the world's children. And it is happening today.
27 Aug 2023
Meet Tony, a dad from Vanuatu who did all he could when his newborn twins were in crisis.
6 Aug 2023
Burundi: the country where young people are leading climate action
From rocket stoves to sustainable agriculture, young people are shaping futures for the next generation
4 Aug 2023
In photos: six months of rebuilding lives in Türkiye and Syria
It has been six months since the deadly earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria devastated children and families. See their journey from heartbreak to hope thanks to the ongoing support of people like you.
4 Aug 2023
Aussie artist Ken Done has spent the past 35 years as a UNICEF Ambassador
Ken Done is the kind of guy that can put a smile on anyone’s face. He’s warm, funny and a world-renowned artist, hailing from Sydney’s North Shore.
27 July 2023
Meet three Team UNICEF City2Surf superstars
Our supporters are lacing their sneakers and hitting the ground running for City2Surf in support of children worldwide.
23 July 2023
How birth certificates can unlock education for Aussie kids
Registering a birth is more important than ever.
23 July 2023
100 days of healing for the children of Sudan
As the conflict in Sudan con, UNICEF is working tirelesslessly to protect the children caught in the middle of the devastating crisis.
13 June 2023
One doctor's mission to make twice the impact
UNICEF supporter Doctor Rob Baume is calling on other doctors to join him to support children well beyond their clinics.
6 June 2023
Ukraine families face new threats after Kakhovka dam collapse
A devastating attack on the Kakhovka dam in Ukraine leaves families and children vulnerable to flooding and displacement.
6 June 2023
Hope amidst crisis: How UNICEF is tackling malnutrition in Somalia
The statistics are heartbreaking, but our dedicated teams are delivering hope to little ones in Somalia amidst the malnutrition crisis.