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Weekly news digest: 9th - 15th August

As a fresh five-day ceasefire is announced in Gaza, residents are returning to their neighbourhoods to see how damaged their homes are. These ruined buildings are in Rafah.
As a fresh five-day ceasefire is announced in Gaza, residents are returning to their neighbourhoods to see how damaged their homes are. These ruined buildings are in Rafah.

Each week we bring you a selection of the latest news stories from around the world. Focusing on issues that affect children, we look at the themes of education, health, community development and emergencies. Catch up on the news from 9th-15th August by reading these news summaries, and click-through for related articles.

This week: food insecurity is threatening communities in Eastern and Central Africa, as well as in Central America; the Ebola outbreak has now spread to Nigeria; girl's rights are being violated in Nepal as child marriage remains common; and the latest from the Gaza conflict.

Children's rights

NEPAL: Although against the law, child marriage remains common in Nepal - particularly amongst the impoverished Dalit community. According to the 2011 census, more than 750,000 women in Nepal were married between 10 and 14 years of age. 73% of girls are married by the time they were 19. Local NGOs say that interventions need to be holistic and integrated into humanitarian and economic spheres, reports IRIN.  Learn about our work in Nepal...


GHANA: Universities and colleges in Ghana will delay opening by at least two weeks, so that they have the chance to put in place measures to screen students coming from Ebola-infected countries. Meanwhile, institutions in other West African countries implement precautionary measures to prevent the spread of Ebola. Read more about the Ebola crisis...


A grandmother (Mogay) carrying her three-year-old grandson (Adam)
Conflict-affected countries are most at risk of poor food security
across Eastern and Central Africa. Note: Archive photo from Somalia
during the East African drought in 2011.

EAST AFRICA: Acute food insecurity is affecting around 20 million people in eastern and central Africa. Many are at 'crisis' and 'emergency' levels according to aid agencies. Countries of major concern are the conflict-affected South Sudan, CAR, DRC and Somalia. NGOs told IRIN that the food and nutrition situation is likely to deteriorate if immediate action isn't taken. Learn about our work across Africa...

NICARAGUA: As the Central American country suffers its worst drought in 32 years, government experts are suggesting that people raise and eat iguanas as a source of protein. Poor harvests and rapid food price increases have led to the food crisis. Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador could require levels of humanitarian aid not seen for over 15 years, reports the Guardian. Learn about our work in the Americas...

WEST AFRICA: With the deadly Ebola virus now reported in four Western African countries, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared the outbreak an international health emergency. With the crisis escalating fast, all our Villages in Ebola-hit countries are taking stringent safety measures to protect SOS families from this incurable and often-fatal disease. Read more...

Community development

Special feature: how can the latest technology benefit communities in developing countries? Our guest blogger explores how the latest technology has the power to address people's needs everywhere. Read more...

Boys in Gaza, Palestine
In the Middle East, crises in Gaza, Syria and Iraq have displaced
millions of people, including thousands of children.

Conflict & natural disaster

GAZA-ISRAEL: A three-day ceasefire began on Sunday evening, which was respected by Gaza and Israel. Following this, a fresh five-day ceasefire was announced. Meanwhile, indirect talks have resumed between negotiators in Cairo, Egypt, to reach a permanent solution. The ceasefire has allowed for children to travel and return to the safety of SOS Children's Village Rafah in Gaza. Read more...

IRAQ: On Wednesday, the UN declared its highest level of emergency for the crisis in Iraq, where 1.2 million have been displaced due to fighting this year. An estimated 80,000 Yazidis and other religious minorities have fled to Syria and then to the Kurdistan region of Iraq. UN agencies say the humanitarian crisis is complex, dangerous and posing serious problems due to the huge number of people on the move. Learn about our work in the Middle East...

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