Harare, Zimbabwe (PANA) - Sweden Tuesday gave a US$ 30.4 million grant to UNICEF for its health and humanitarian-related programmes in Zimbabwe targetting women and children.
UNICEF acting country representative, Marc Rubin, said the agency would focus on programmes that improved the welfare and health of children and women, who were among the most vulnerable groups in the southern African country.
It is estimated that 100 children die every day in Zimbabwe from preventable diseases, and eight women each day from pregnancy-related complications.
“A lot of progress has been achieved for women and children in the past three years in Zimbabwe but the progress would not have been possible without the support of donors such as the Government of Sweden,” he said.
A political and economic crisis in the country over the last decade has forced cut-backs in the health budget, a situation which has affected women and children the most.
Most public hospitals have no drugs, while the crisis forced most health experts such as doctors and nurses to leave the country.
As a result, UNICEF and other UN agencies such as the World Health Organisation have been key players in Zimbabwe's health sector.
-0- PANA RS/VAO 4Sept2012