Humanitarian Action for Children 2023 – Madagascar


• Epidemics, cyclones, floods and prolonged drought in the south exacerbated by climate change further compound systematic weakness in Madagascar. This has affected the lives and well-being of children and their families in 2022. UNICEF projects 4.8 million people will need humanitarian assistance in 2023. A projected 2.4 million children will require humanitarian assistance, including 479,0003 children aged 6-59 months who are expected to suffer acute malnourishment through the lean season in southern Madagascar.

Increased stress and economic pressure on families expose 533,000 children to violence, abuse and exploitation, including child marriage, child labour and gender-based violence.

• UNICEF will provide a multisectoral, integrated response to address the humanitarian needs of children and their families. Reinforcing the resilience of local communities and systems and aligning with the Core Commitments for Children in Humanitarian Action will be the backbone of the response.

• UNICEF requires US$41.1 million4 to address the acute needs of 1.5 million people in 2023, including 760,000 women/girls.


92,000 children with severe wasting admitted for treatment

759,000 children receiving Vitamin A supplementation

230,000 women and children accessing gender-based violence mitigation, prevention, response

520,000 people accessing a sufficient quantity and quality of water


Throughout 2022, Madagascar continued to be confronted with multiple complex crises, including consecutive cyclones that resulted in destruction and damage in the east and southeast regions; prolonged drought affecting the south; and epidemics throughout the country. The socioeconomic impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and climate change-driven extreme weather events, coupled with structural issues, brought the country to a historically high poverty rate, with 81 per cent of people living below poverty line. This includes 1.3 million children. The situation has significantly increased social protection needs while putting basic services under pressure.

The slow recovery from three consecutive failed rainy seasons in the south has left more than 4.8 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. During the upcoming lean season (January-April 2023), an estimated 479,000 children will be malnourished, including 92,000 experiencing wasting. Around 1.9 million11 are already affected by very difficult access to safe water and sanitation. The water situation is expected to deteriorate further with another season of below-average rainfall during the current rainy season (October 2022 to April 2023), which could create a sixth consecutive below-average harvest.

The particularly intense cyclone season of 2022 affected 423,800 people10 in southeast Madagascar, causing 136 deaths and the widespread destruction of public infrastructure and crops. Consequently, five out of the six districts in these regions were classified as Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) Phase 3, or crisis level.

While Madagascar is prone to such epidemics as plague, measles and malaria, weak health services struggle to ensure continuity of basic services during crises.

Increased stress and economic pressure on families, exacerbated by the socioeconomic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, further expose 533,000 children to violence, abuse and exploitation, including child marriage, child labour and multiple forms of gender-based violence. Humanitarian crises reduced households’ resilience and potentially pushed them to resort to negative coping mechanisms, which mainly affect women and children. This situation, in turn, is exacerbated by chronic weaknesses of systems for monitoring, preventing and responding to violence, including gender-based violence.

Source: UN Children’s Fund