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$9m Swedish aid to boost child and maternal health in Somalia

MOGADISHU (SD) – Over one million children and women in Somalia will access improved health services and reduce child and maternal deaths thanks to $9 million by Swedish government.

In a statement, Ambassador Staffan Tillander, the Swedish Ambassador to Somalia said funding will strengthen access to essential health and protection services and underscores Sweden’s long-term commitment to improving the lives of Somali women and children.

“Children deserve to have a healthy start in life and to grow up in a safe environment where their protection rights are upheld,” said Tillander.

The funds will also boost the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination which is currently at 40% uptake. Somalia has since received 300,000 doses from the global Covax programme.

“It is critical that we scale up the COVID-19 vaccination campaign to reach the most vulnerable populations and frontline workers in Somalia. The fight against COVID-19 is a global one and part of this funding will help support UNICEF and WHO to speed up the vaccination effort so that the second wave of COVID-19 is contained,” added the Ambassador.

According to the statement, the Swedish embassy in Mogadishu in partnership with UNICEF will implementing the support.

 UNICEF acting country representative Jester Moller hailed the contribution noting it will go a long way in improving   child health in Somalia.

“UNICEF is extremely grateful to the Government of Sweden for this generous contribution,” said Jesper. “Every child has a right to health and protection. This multi-year funding provides us with the much-needed opportunity to work harder on long-term solutions and do more to keep Somali children and their families healthy and safe especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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