The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has warned that an estimated 16 million children are "in urgent need of life-saving support" following the torrential monsoon rains and catastrophic flooding that have hit Bangladesh, India and Nepal. Up to a third of Bangladesh is currently under water. A total of 45 million people have been badly affected in the rains, which started several weeks ago. UNICEF said: "Millions of children have seen their lives swept away by these devastating floods. Children have lost their homes, schools and even friends and loved ones." It added: "There is a danger the worst could still be to come as rains continue and flood waters move south."
UNICEF said it is putting all its efforts into helping those who need it most. It said: "[We are] on the ground working in close coordination with respective governments and humanitarian partners in the South Asian countries to scale up [our] responses and respond to the immediate needs of affected children and their families." It added: "Massive damage to school infrastructure and supplies means hundreds of thousands of children may miss weeks or months of school. Getting children back into school is absolutely critical in establishing a sense of stability for children during times of crisis and provides a sense of normality when everything else is being turned upside down."