This news being reported by Reuters is just devastating:
At least 17,000 children died in schools destroyed in Pakistan's devastating earthquake and a second wave of deaths could happen unless the United Nations gets funds to ensure proper care for survivors, UNICEF said on Monday.The Pakistani government has reopened makeshift schools using tents as classrooms.
Children who survived the quake had suffered probably even worse trauma than those who escaped the Asian tsunami, said Ann Veneman, executive director of the U.N. Children's Fund.
"They were in school at the time when so many other school buildings came down," she told a news conference in the Pakistani capital Islamabad after visiting the disaster area.
"The ones that survived, many have injuries. The ones that survived, also many lost friends. They lost teachers, they lost important people in their lives."
The government says more than 55,000 people died in Pakistan in the October 8 earthquake while more than 78,000 were injured.
"We know that children under 18 are about half of the population in the affected areas," Veneman said. "And therefore we think that about half of the victims, either injured or the dead, have been children."
She said UNICEF estimated at least 17,000 children were killed in schools destroyed in the quake, which struck during morning classes on a Saturday. "That is one number we have some estimates on," she said.
A massive U.N.-led relief effort has been struggling to ensure survivors in remote mountains settlements have shelter and sufficient food for the coming Himalayan winter.