As the third wave of COVID-19 sweeps across the nation, the monsoon rains and flooding have further exacerbated the risks for women and girls in particular. When an emergency strikes, UNFPA prioritizes its work on reaching the most vulnerable, particularly pregnant and lactating women and girls of reproductive age, by providing them with the necessary items to fulfill their basic needs in the midst of the crisis.

As part of this response, Ms. Ritsu Nacken, UNFPA Country Representative handed over 2000 prepositioned Dignity Kits and Maternity Kits today to Maj. Gen. S. Ranasinghe RWP, RSP, MSc, NDU, PSC, Director General of the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) in the presence of  Mr. J. M. S. Jayaweera – Director (Preparedness Planning), DMC and Ms. Sharika Cooray, National Programme and Policy Analyst – Women’s Rights & Gender of UNFPA. 

Acknowledging this support, Maj. Gen. S. Ranasinghe stated, “We’re pleased that UNFPA is supporting us to ensure that women and girls’ hygiene and sanitation are addressed during emergencies.”

These dignity and maternity kits are carefully tailored to suit pregnant mothers and women of reproductive age, and curated to help women and girls maintain proper hygiene during emergency situations and provide a range of other essential items. 

The kits worth approximately LKR 13.1 million, which is prepositioned in partnership with Oxfam in Sri Lanka, are part of the UNFPA regional pre-positioning initiative to support countries to respond to emergencies effectively.