"Water-borne diseases like cholera have direct and dramatic impact on children and the most vulnerable families,"
said Marc Vincent, UNICEF Representative in Haiti. "Cholera can kill within hours or a malnourished child living in a community without support capacity. " 109.423 children under 5 years were identified among the suspected cases of cholera since 2010. 754 died. "

In partnership with the Haitian government and many stakeholders, UNICEF fight against waterborne diseases including cholera, by improving access to water, sanitation and health services for Haitian children and their families. This year's World Health Day coincides with the launch of the Plan of Humanitarian Response, which aims to raise US $ 193.8 million to meet Haiti's emergency needs. UNICEF takes this opportunity to encourage the Haitian Government and the entire international community, to redouble their efforts to protect Haitian children suffering preventable diseases, such as cholera, inflicting daily.

Among the adverse effects of water-borne diseases on children include:

1) Physical weakness - making the child more vulnerable to other diseases and malnutrition.

2) The school absence - due to the illness which has an impact on the academic performance of the child, particularly in cases of common diseases.

3) The social and economic impact - derived from the illness or death of a parent. When a parent is affected, children sometimes can not go to school which is due to lower average family, the burden of domestic work and the need to accompany the sick parent.

4) In case of cholera, the stigmatization of the child and family can be sustainable and penalize the normal development of the child in his community.

The situation is worrying but progress is being done.

The infant mortality rate for children under five has declined steadily over the past 15 years. Nationally two out of three households now have access to safe drinking water, and one in three has improved sanitation facilities. And, despite the many challenges, significant gains have been made against cholera in the last three years: From 101.354 suspected cases in 2012 to 29,078 in 2014 and 36,045 in 2015. The short-term objective of national phase-out plan cholera has therefore been achieved, with less than 50,000 cases in 2015.

This progress in cholera control were possible thanks to the coordination mechanism, monitoring, warning and response in place since mid-2013. But too many children continue to suffer and die. In 2015, about 21 percent of suspected cases of cholera were under the age of 5 years, and 38 percent under 18 years.

"The waterborne diseases including cholera are preventable. "Emphasizes Mr. Vincent. "We need to help children and their families to protect themselves. Information on the means of prevention, access to water, sanitation and health services are essential. "As part of the Plan of Humanitarian Response 2016, US $ 20.3 are requested for the fight against cholera. Mobilising these funds represent a decisive step for the health of children in Haiti.