In recent years, and especially since 2013 there have been alarming trends and a significant increase in the killing and maiming of children as a result of accidents with explosive ordnance (EO). With the humanitarian imperative to better protect children from explosive hazards and to ensure that child victims have access to the assistance required, the Child Protection, Mine Action AoRs, Education, Health clusters and respective lead agencies agreed on and committed to four main collective outcomes to guide the response:
1. Prevention: Reduce the number of children who have an accident with an explosive ordnance;
2. Reduce Mortality: Increase the survival rate of child casualties through increased access to first aid, access to safe blood cold chains, trauma surgery, and ongoing medical care;
3. Increase personal capacity of child survivors through rehabilitation, as well as mental health & psycho-social support (MHPSS) of both child survivors and their caregivers;
4. Social Inclusion: Increase inclusion of child survivors in family, community and school life.
In order to build on efforts to achieve these outcomes increasing inter-cluster collaboration and cross-sectoral approaches has been essential. As of January 2020, a technical reference group (TRG) was formed to contribute to these efforts, comprised of experts and coordinators from AoR and Cluster lead agencies, the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining, Landmine Monitor, Humanity & Inclusion, OCHA, Mines Advisory Group, and the IFRC/ICRC.
Moreover, a Senior Protection Advisor deployed to the clusters in close collaboration with the TRG, developed a guidance on “Mitigating the Impact of Explosive Ordnance on Children through Collaborative Humanitarian Action” in support of more systematic inclusion of EO prevention and response for children in the humanitarian programme cycle, where and when needed most.
Guidance (2020) to support key stakeholders in strengthening risk reduction and the response to the needs of child victims of EO throughout humanitarian programme cycles: “Mitigating the Impact of Explosive Ordnance on Children through Collaborative Humanitarian Action”
The full package also contains a series of annexes:
- Main document
- Annex A: Mapping of Existing Assessment tools (under development)
- Annex B: Matrix on Inclusion in the Humanitarian Needs Overview
- Annex C: Matrix on Inclusion in the Humanitarian Response Plan
- Annex D: Good Practices Criteria
- Annex E: Survey Results and Recommendations
- Annex F: Analytical Frameworks (under development)
- Annex G: Acronyms
UNICEF Guidance relevant to VA for Children (2014): Assistance to Victims of Landmines and Explosive Remnants of War: Guidance on Child-focused Victim Assistance
Core Commitments for Children in Humanitarian Action (CCCs) (2020): the CCCs in reference to mine action provide a strong policy framework for the whole humanitarian sector to protect children from explosive ordnance (EO).
Increasing Resilience to Weapon Contamination through Behaviour Change (2020): these guidelines developed by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) provide ways to better manage the risks associated with weapon contamination resulting from conventional weapons and/or chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear hazards.
Child Protection Minimum Standards (2019): The CPMS have been developed by the Alliance for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action to support child protection work in humanitarian settings. Further information can be found on their website.
UNMAS in Afghanistan: Behaviour Change Communication for Explosive Ordnance Risk Education (2019): the explosive ordnance risk education (EORE) programme in Afghanistan as an example of successful pilot programme in Behaviour Change Communication.
- “Explosive Ordnance Child Casualties: Prevention and Response” (June 2020): presentation and recording
- Donor Advocacy Event (December 2020)
Last Updated: 30 June 2021