UNICEF donates 700,000 masks to Kenyan schools

A pupil reads a book at State House Primary School in Nairobi, capital of Kenya, Oct. 12, 2020. (Xinhua/John Okoyo)

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on Wednesday donated 700,000 masks to Kenya for distribution to schools to assist with the safe school reopening on January 4, 2021.

FILE PHOTO: A pupil reads a book at State House Primary School in Nairobi, capital of Kenya. (Xinhua/John Okoyo)

Maniza Zaman, UNICEF Kenya country representative, said that her organization fully supports the government’s phased reopening of schools.

“The latest evidence confirms that the risks to children of being out of school are much higher than the risks they encounter in schools,” she noted.

Zaman, who spoke in Nairobi, expressed the need to ensure that learners are as safe as possible when they go back to class.

She noted that the masks will be distributed to the most vulnerable schools by the ministry of education, based on average class sizes, monetary poverty and equity within counties.

Zaman observed that schools in informal settlements, special needs schools and schools with the highest pupil to classroom ratio will be the beneficiaries of the masks.