According to statistics released by MoLISA, over 55 per cent of children who drown to death come from poor households in rural areas where the mortality rate of children under the age of five is the highest in the country. Over the past four years, more than 2,100 children have died as a result of drowning.
This information was released during a recent launching ceremony of Action Month for Children 2019, which aims to join forces to help poor and ethnic children, prevent violence and sexual abuse against children, and equip children with drowning prevention skills.
The highlight of the action month will be teaching children drowning prevention skills, which is part of a wider national plan for child injuries prevention during the 2016-2020 period.
The number of deaths caused by drowning is often attributed to a lack of skills in the water, a lack of supervision by adults, and risks brought about by the local environment.
The Ministry has also received guidelines on drowning prevention by the World Health Organization that features six interventions that can be implemented in case of a child drowning as well as four cross-cutting strategies.
Representatives from the Bloomberg Philanthropies Foundation and the Global Health Policies Advocacy Organization of the US have committed to providing more than 8,200 children with drowning prevention skills, in addition to water skills to a further 16,000 children.