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77pc of Cambodian households with children experience loss of income during pandemic

PHNOM PENH (XINHUA) – The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Cambodia said yesterday that 77 per cent of households with children have experienced loss of income since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

In its press statement, the UN agency said that it, together with the World Food Program (WFP) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), has conducted regular COVID-19 Socio-Economic Surveys throughout the pandemic to monitor its impact on vulnerable households.

The results confirmed that Cambodian households with children were more likely to lose income than households without children, said the statement.

It said “77 per cent of households with children experienced loss of income, compared to 69 per cent of households without children”, adding, “Similarly, 69 per cent of households with children resorted to at least one negative food-based coping strategy during the pandemic, such as reducing food portions or choosing less healthy ingredients”.

UNICEF’s representative in Cambodia Foroogh Foyouzat said the study demonstrated that children have faced the greatest hardships as a result of the pandemic.

“The Cambodia government’s notable efforts to combat the pandemic and to alleviate its negative impacts through the introduction of comprehensive social protection have certainly cushioned the harm caused to children, but haven’t eliminated it,” she said.

“We need to expand social protection services for the most vulnerable to give children a chance to recover from the pandemic and be able to access the education, healthcare, nutrition and other social services they deserve.”

Cambodia has fully resumed its socio-economic activities and reopened its borders to vaccinated travellers since the middle of November last year after most of its 16-million population have been fully inoculated against COVID-19.

A vendor selling food on a street in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. PHOTO: XINHUA

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