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The State of the World’s Children 2014 In Numbers: Every Child Counts - Revealing disparities, advancing children’s rights
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UNICEF joined children’s rights advocates around the world in applauding the news that children will soon be able to file complaints with the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, securing their right to make their voices heard. Attached please find UNICEF news note and the news release of the UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights. For your information, Turkmenistan has not yet ratified the Third Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on a Communications Procedure. News notes are in English, French and Spanish.

Children’s rights boosted as UN body now able to hear individual complaints

GENEVA (14 January 2014) – Children whose rights have been violated will soon be able to complain to a key UN Committee after a new legal instrument on the rights of the child was ratified by the required 10 countries. 

Costa Rica became on 14 January* the 10th country to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on a Communications Procedure, meaning that it will take effect in three months. 

Children or their representatives will be able to submit complaints to the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which will then decide whether to review the case. Where a violation is found, it will recommend that the State concerned takes action to remedy the situation. 

“The Optional Protocol gives children who have exhausted all legal avenues in their own countries the possibility of applying to the Committee,” said CRC Chair Kirsten Sandberg. “It means children are able to fully exercise their rights and are empowered to have access to international human rights bodies in the same way adults are under several other human rights treaties,” she added. 

“It is a major step forward in the implementation of children’s rights, but at the same time we urge States to develop their own systems to ensure that children’s rights are respected and protected and that their voices can be heard,” Ms Sandberg said, noting that it is the primary responsibility of States to address child rights violations. 

Individual children or groups of children will be able to submit complaints about specific violations of their rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and under the Optional Protocol on children in armed conflict and the Optional Protocol on the sale of children, child pornography and child prostitution. But they can only complain to the CRC if their government has ratified the Optional Protocol on a Communications Procedure. 

“We applaud the countries that have ratified it and call on other States to take this step too,” Ms Sandberg said. The CRC Chairperson stressed that the Committee’s overriding concern would be the best interests of the child. 

“We will have child-sensitive procedures and also safeguards to ensure the child is not being manipulated or used to make the complaint. And at all times we will work for the rights of the child and take that child’s views into account,” said Ms Sandberg. 

The Committee may ask the State to take interim measures to protect the child or the group of children or prevent any reprisals. At the end of the review, if the State concerned is found to have violated the Convention, the Committee will issue specific recommendations which the State must implement. 

The Committee on the Rights of the Child is composed of 18 international independent human rights experts who monitor the implementation of the Convention and the Optional Protocols by States parties. 

Countries that have ratified the Optional Protocol as of 14 January 2013: Albania, Bolivia, Gabon, Germany, Montenegro, Portugal, Spain, Thailand, Slovakia and Costa Rica.
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Turkmenistan juvenile inspectors and police build capacity in child justice
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Facts for life book with child care practices
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UNICEF and private sector partnership in wide dissemination of child care messages
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 17 September 2013 – More health workers and families in Turkmenistan will benefit from the improved knowledge on child care practices described in the globally trusted publication “Facts for Life” which has been launched today by the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, UNICEF and the German company RWE DEA AG. The joint launch also signifies UNICEF’s increased partnership with the private sector for the wellbeing of Turkmenistan’s children.
The Facts for Life, adapted from the fourth global edition, contains simple and clear messages on child care practices, including safe delivery, birth, breastfeeding, early childhood development, protection, immunization, HIV/AIDS prevention and other live saving measures that will help health workers and other caretakers to reduce under five child mortality and prevent diseases. The launch and the wide distribution of the publication are particularly timely in the light of the Government of Turkmenistan’s joining the global movement “Committing to Child Survival: A Promise Renewed”. A Promise Renewed movement, signed by 176 governments is aimed at accelerating action on maternal, newborn and child survival, enabling more countries to achieve the Millennium Development Goals on reducing under five child and maternal mortality by 2015.
“UNICEF advocates for measures to give children the best start in life, because proper care at the youngest age forms the strongest foundation for a person’s future. The Facts for Life effectively communicates these simple ‘care for development’ practices that can be easily fulfilled by caregivers and families to achieve children’s full potential in life,” said Oyunsaikhan Dendevnorov, UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan in her opening remarks.
UNICEF has established a successful partnership with the German RWE DEA AG Company, which supported the printing of the Facts for Life in the quantity of 20,000 copies making the publication widely available for frontline healthcare workers such as family doctors and nurses, and other caregivers to provide further counselling to families on child care practices throughout the country.
“I am extremely happy to have an opportunity to support the wide spread distribution of the Facts for Life publication. I hope it will be useful and beneficial to many people in Turkmenistan”, said Peter Immerz, General Manager of the RWE Dea AG company.
The Facts for Life dissemination and promotion plan presented during the launch envisions an innovative use child care messages in various platforms, including cascade trainings, featured TV spots and animated films as well as a survey on improved knowledge and skills of caregivers on life saving practices.
For more information please contact:
Ms. Ayna Seyitlieva
UNICEF Communication for Development Officer
Ms. Gulyalek Soltanova
UNICEF Communication Officer
Tel: +99312 425681/82/85/86
Fax: +99312 420830
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UN: Global child deaths down by almost half since 1990
NEW YORK, 13 September 2013 – In 2012, approximately 6.6 million children worldwide – 18,000 children per day – died before reaching their fifth birthday, according to a new report released today by UNICEF, the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Bank Group and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs/Population Division. This is roughly half the number of under-fives who died in 1990, when more than 12 million children died.

 “This trend is a positive one. Millions of lives have been saved," said Anthony Lake, UNICEF Executive Director.  "And we can do still better. Most of these deaths can be prevented, using simple steps that many countries have already put in place – what we need is a greater sense of urgency.”

The leading causes of death among children aged less than five years include pneumonia, prematurity, birth asphyxia, diarrhoea and malaria.  Globally, about 45 per cent of under-five deaths are linked to undernutrition.

About half of under-five deaths occur in only five countries: China, Democratic Republic of the Congo, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan.   India (22 per cent) and Nigeria (13 per cent) together account for more than one-third of all deaths of children under the age of five.

Newborn children are at particularly high risk

“Care for mother and baby in the first 24 hours of any child’s life is critical for the health and wellbeing of both,” says Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General at WHO.  “Up to half of all newborn deaths occur within the first day.”

The lives of most of these babies could be saved if they had access to some basic health-care services.  These include skilled care during and after childbirth; inexpensive medicines such as antibiotics; and practices such as skin to skin contact between mother and newborn babies and exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life.
Progress, challenges

While the global average annual rate of reduction in under-five mortality accelerated from 1.2 per cent a year for the period 1990-1995 to 3.9 per cent for 2005-2012, it remains insufficient to reach Millennium Development Goal 4 which aims to reduce the under-five mortality rate by two-thirds between 1990 and 2015.

“Continued investments by countries to strengthen health systems are essential to ensure that all mothers and children can get the affordable, quality care they need to live healthy, productive lives,” said Keith Hansen, Acting Vice President of Human Development at the World Bank Group.

Sub-Saharan Africa, in particular, faces significant challenges as the region with the highest child mortality rates in the world. With a rate of 98 deaths per 1000 live births, a child born in sub-Saharan Africa faces more than 16 times the risk of dying before his or her fifth birthday than a child born in a high-income country.

However, sub-Saharan Africa has shown remarkable acceleration in its progress, with the annual rate of reduction in deaths increasing from 0.8 per cent in 1990 -1995 to 4.1 per cent in 2005-2012.  This is the result of sound government policies, prioritized investments and actions to address the key causes of child mortality and reach even the most difficult to reach populations.

Global and national action to improve child health

Both globally and in countries, a series of initiatives are in place aimed at improving access to maternal and child health care, inspired by the United Nations Secretary-General’s widely endorsed Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health which aims to save 16 million lives by 2015 through a “continuum of care” approach.

As part of this strategy, focus on specific areas is given through:

• A Global Vaccine Action Plan that is working towards universal access to immunization by 2020. Immunization is one of most effective country-driven and globally-supported actions, as it currently averts an estimated two to three million deaths every year in all age groups from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), and measles. In 2012, an estimated 83 per cent (111 million) of infants worldwide were vaccinated with three doses of diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP3) vaccine.

• Some 176 countries have signed on to A Promise Renewed – the call to action spearheaded by the Governments of Ethiopia, India and the United States, together with UNICEF in a global effort to stop children from dying of causes that are easily prevented. 

• The United Nations Commission on Life-Saving Commodities for Women and Children is helping countries improve access to priority medicines such as basic antibiotics and oral rehydration salts.
• Earlier this year, WHO and UNICEF joined other partners in establishing a new Global Action Plan for Pneumonia and Diarrhoea which aims to end preventable child deaths from these two major killers of under-fives by 2025. The plan promotes practices known to protect children from disease, such as creating a healthy home environment, and measures to ensure that every child has access to proven and appropriate preventive and treatment measures.
•  Similarly, partners are working on Every Newborn: a global action plan to end preventable deaths. The aim is to launch this global newborn action plan in May 2014 and provide strategic directions to prevent and manage the most common causes of newborn mortality, which account for around 44 per cent of all under-five mortality. 
• UNICEF, WHO and the World Bank Group all support the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) global movement in its efforts to collaborate with countries to implement programmes to address poor nutrition at scale with a core focus on empowering women.
"Global partnerships to further accelerate the reduction of under-five mortality globally and in sub-Saharan Africa are essential," said Wu Hongbo, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs at the United Nations. "In this regard, it is critical that national governments and development partners redouble efforts through to the end of 2015 and beyond."
Note to editors:
Global estimates of child mortality are challenging to produce because many countries lack complete systems to track vital records.  The estimates released today are based on statistical models and data from a variety of sources, including household surveys and censuses.
All the numbers cited here fall within a statistical confidence range. For example, the estimated global number of 6.6 million deaths in 2012 falls within the statistical confidence range from 6.3 to 7.0.

The Inter-Agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation or IGME was formed in 2004 to share data on child mortality, harmonize estimates within the UN system, improve methods for child mortality estimation report on progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and enhance country capacity to produce timely and properly assessed estimates of child mortality. The IGME, led by UNICEF and the World Health Organization, also includes the World Bank and the United Nations Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs as full members. For more information visit:

UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. For more information about UNICEF and its work visit: Follow us on Twitter and Facebook
About WHO
WHO is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters, shaping the health research agenda, setting norms and standards, articulating evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries, and monitoring and assessing health trends and improving global health security. For more information about WHO and its work, visit

About the World Bank Group
The World Bank Group is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world, with the goals of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity. Improving health is integral to achieving these goals. The Bank Group provides financing, state-of-the-art analysis, and policy advice to help countries expand access to quality, affordable health care; protect people from falling into poverty or worsening poverty due to illness; and promote investments in all sectors that form the foundation of healthy @worldbankhealth
For further information, please contact:
Kate Donovan, UNICEF Media, Tel +1 212 326 7452 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +1 212 326 7452 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting,
Marixie Mercado, UNICEF Media in Geneva, Tel +41 22 909 5716 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +41 22 909 5716 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting; Mobile +41 79 756 7703 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +41 79 756 7703 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting,

Iman Morooka, UNICEF Strategic Communications, Tel +1 212 326 7211 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +1 212 326 7211 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting,
Fadéla Chaib, WHO, Tel +41 22 791 3228 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +41 22 791 3228 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting, Mobile: +41 79 475 5556 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +41 79 475 5556 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting,
Melanie Mayhew, World Bank Group, Tel +1 202-459-7115 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +1 202-459-7115 FREEend_of_the_skype_highlighting,
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UNICEF’s Latest Data Reveal Disparities, Show Need to Innovate to Advance Children’s Rights

As 25th anniversary of children’s rights convention approaches, vast progress made but reaching unreached children will require sharper focus on disparities, new report says


NEW YORK, 30 January 2014 – Declaring that 'every child counts', UNICEF today urged greater effort and innovation to identify and address the gaps that prevent the most disadvantaged of the world's 2.2 billion children from enjoying their rights.
The children's agency, in a report released today, highlights the importance of data in making progress for children and exposing the unequal access to services and protections that mars the lives of so many.
“Data have made it possible to save and improve the lives of millions of children, especially the most deprived,” said Tessa Wardlaw, Chief of UNICEF’s Data and Analytics Section.  “Further progress can only be made if we know which children are the most neglected, where girls and boys are out of school, where disease is rampant or where basic sanitation is lacking.”
Tremendous progress has been made since the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) was signed in 1989 and in the run up to the culmination of the Millennium Development Goals in 2015. UNICEF's flagship report, The State of the World's Children 2014 in Numbers shows that:
- Some 90 million children who would have died before reaching the age of 5 if child mortality rates had stuck at their 1990 level have, instead, lived. In large measure, this is because of progress in delivering immunizations, health, and water and sanitation services.
- Improvements in nutrition have led to a 37 per cent drop in stunting since 1990.
- Primary school enrolment has increased, even in the least developed countries: Whereas in 1990 only 53 in 100 children in those countries gained school admission, by 2011 the number had improved to 81 in 100.
Even so, the statistics in the report, titled "Every Child Counts: Revealing disparities, advancing children's rights," also bear witness to ongoing violations of children's rights:
- Some 6.6 million children under 5 years of age died in 2012, mostly from preventable causes, in violation of their fundamental right to survive and develop.
- Fifteen per cent of the world’s children are put to work that compromises their right to protection from economic exploitation and infringes on their right to learn and play.
- Eleven per cent of girls are married before they turn 15, jeopardizing their rights to health, education and protection.
Data also reveal gaps and inequities, showing the gains of development are unevenly distributed:
- The world’s poorest children are nearly three (2.7) times less likely than the richest ones to have a skilled attendant at their birth, leaving them and their mothers at increased risk of birth-related complications.
- In The Niger, all urban households but only 39 per cent of rural households have access to safe drinking water.
- In Chad, for every 100 boys who enter secondary school, only 44 girls do – leaving them without an education and without protections and services that schools can provide.
The report notes that "being counted makes children visible, and this act of recognition makes it possible to address their needs and advance their rights." It adds that innovations in data collection, analysis and dissemination are making it possible to disaggregate data by such factors as location, wealth, sex, and ethnic or disability status, to include children who have been excluded or overlooked by broad averages.
The report urges increased investment in innovations that right the wrong of exclusion.
"Overcoming exclusion begins with inclusive data. To improve the reach, availability and reliability of data on the deprivations with which children and their families contend, the tools of collection and analysis are constantly being modified – and new ones are being developed. This will require sustained investment and commitment," the report says.
Much of what is known about the situations of children comes from household surveys, and in particular the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys (MICS). Designed and supported by UNICEF, MICS are conducted by national statistical authorities and provide disaggregated data on a range of topics affecting children's survival, development, rights and experience of life. To date, MICS surveys have been conducted in more than 100 countries. In the last round of MICS, interviews were completed in more than 650,000 households in 50 countries.
Thirty years have passed since The State of the World’s Children began to publish tables of standardized global and national statistics aimed at providing a detailed picture of children’s circumstances. With the release of an edition of the report dedicated to data, UNICEF is inviting decision-makers and the general public to access and use its statistics - at - to drive positive change for children.
"Data do not, of themselves, change the world. They make change possible – by identifying needs, supporting advocacy, and gauging progress. What matters most is that decision-makers use the data to make positive change, and that the data are available for children and communities to use in holding duty-bearers to account,” the report said.
Broadcasters:  A video news story is available at

To read The State of the World’s Children 2014 In Numbers: Every Child Counts - Revealing disparities, advancing children’s rights and to see additional multimedia material, please visit:  

For information on MICS, please visit 
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. 

For more information about UNICEF and its work visit:

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact: 

Kate Donovan, UNICEF New York, Tel: + 1 212 326 7452 / Mobile: + 1 917 378 2128; 
Rita Ann Wallace, UNICEF New York, Tel: + 1 212 326 7586 / Mobile: + 1 917 213 4034; 
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Ministerial Education Conference
Including all children in quality learning
10-13 December 2013, Istanbul, Turkey
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Turkmenistan children's participation at the UN Side Event on Youth Voices on Post 2015
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Worldwide estimates show that 1 billion children experience abuse in their lives. In Eastern and Southern Africa recent data indicates that 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys will be sexually abused before the age of 18.

Important progress has been made in deepening the understanding of violence against children. More has been learnt as well when it comes to solutions to the problem and what can be done to address it. And yet, violence against children still lacks traction on the public policy agenda and responses are not always effective. Why and what can be done?
[11:32:13 AM] gulyalek: The Debate: Violence against Children - TRAILER
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Some 35 million more children under five at risk if child mortality goal not met
NEW YORK, 13 September 2013- A new UNICEF report shows that if current trends continue, the world will not meet Millennium Development Goal 4 – to cut the rate of under-five mortality by two-thirds by 2015.  Worse, if current trends continue, the goal will not be reached until 2028.   
The cost of inaction is alarmingly high: as many as 35 million more children could die mostly from preventable causes between 2015 and 2028, if the global community does not take immediate action to accelerate progress.  
That is the bad news.  But the report provides many points of good news as well. It demonstrates that dramatic reductions in child survival are possible. Globally, the annual number of under-five deaths fell from an estimated 12.6 million in 1990 to approximately 6.6 million in 2012.  Over the past 22 years, the world saved around ninety million lives that might otherwise have been lost.
“Yes, we should celebrate the progress,” said Anthony Lake, UNICEF Executive Director. “But how can we celebrate when there is so much more to do before we reach the goal?  And we can speed up the progress - we know how, but we need to act with a renewed sense of urgency,” he said.  
Just over a year ago, the Governments of Ethiopia, India and the United States, together with UNICEF, launched Committing to Child Survival: A Promise Renewed, a global effort to stop children from dying of causes that are easily prevented.
So far, 176 governments have signed a pledge, vowing to accelerate progress on child survival. Hundreds of civil society, religious groups and private individuals have also pledged support for the shared goal of giving every last child the best possible start in life.
The 2013 Progress Report on Committing to Child Survival: A Promise Renewed examines trends in child mortality since 1990, analyses the main causes of under-five deaths, and highlights national and global efforts to save children’s lives. The progress made to date is due to the collective efforts of governments, civil society and the private sector, as well as the increase in affordable, evidence-based interventions, such as insecticide-treated mosquito nets, medicines, vaccines, proper breastfeeding, nutritional supplements and therapeutic food, rehydration treatment for diarrhoea, and improved access to safe water and sanitation, among others.
The report shows sharp reductions in preventable child deaths across all regions of the world, and at all levels of national income, including low-income countries. In fact, some of the world’s poorest countries have made the strongest gains in child survival since 1990.  A few low-income countries with high child mortality rates, such as Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Liberia, Malawi, Nepal and United Republic of Tanzania, have already reduced their under-five death rates by two-thirds or more since 1990, reaching Millennium Development Goal 4 for the reduction of child deaths ahead of the 2015 deadline.
Globally, the pace of decline has accelerated with the annual rate of decline tripling since the 1990s.  Sub-Saharan Africa has also accelerated its rate of decline, with its annual rate of reduction increased more than more than fivefold since the early 1990s.  In the past seven years, Eastern and Southern Africa has been among the best performing regions in the world, reducing under-five mortality at an annual rate of 5.3 per cent in 2005-2012.
By contrast, West and Central Africa recorded the lowest level of progress on child survival, compared to other regions around the globe.   The region also has the highest rate of mortality, with almost one in every eight children dying before the age of five.  West and Central Africa has had virtually no reduction in its annual number of child deaths since 1990.
Pneumonia, diarrhoea, and malaria remain leading causes of child deaths globally, claiming the lives of around 6,000 children under five each day. Undernutrition contributes almost half of these deaths. 
The first month of life is the most precarious for a young child. In 2012, close to three million babies died during the first month of life, mostly from easily preventable causes.   
Reversing these devastating trends requires immediate action on multiple fronts, as outlined in the Millennium Development Goals - reducing poverty, decreasing maternal mortality, boosting education and gender equality, and promoting environmental sustainability.
 “Progress can and must be made,” said Mr. Lake. “When concerted action, sound strategies, adequate resources and strong political will are harnessed in support of child and maternal survival, dramatic reductions in child mortality aren’t just feasible, they are morally imperative.”
Note for Editors:
Country progress examples
• In Bangladesh, under-five mortality rate decreased by 72 per cent from 1990 to 2012, mainly thanks to expanding immunization for children, delivering oral rehydration therapy to treat diarrhoea, and providing Vitamin A supplementation. Expanding a network of community health workers also improved the quality of healthcare and led to an increased use of health facilities. Women’s empowerment, education for mothers, improving mothers’ health, and implementing strategies to reduce poverty also contributed to reducing child deaths.
• In Brazil, under-five mortality rate decreased by 77 per cent between 1990 and 2012, thanks to a combination of tactics. These include efforts to deliver healthcare at the community level, improvements in sanitation conditions, providing mothers with knowledge, promoting breastfeeding and expanding immunization.
• Ethiopia, a co-sponsor of the Call to Action, has recorded tremendous gains in reducing the under-five mortality rate, with a dramatic 67 per cent reduction since 1990.  The health extension programme implemented in Ethiopia is one example of how critical community health workers are in providing quality care to children and mothers in remote areas.  The programme which was launched in 2004 currently deploys 38,000 government-paid female health extension workers. UNICEF supports the programme by providing supplies including vaccine storage equipment, delivery beds and medications, and supporting training for health workers. The programme also provides treatment of severe acute malnutrition, diarrhoea, malaria and pneumonia.
About Committing to Child Survival: A Promise Renewed
A Promise Renewed is a global movement that seeks to advance Every Woman Every Child – a strategy launched by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to mobilize and intensify global action to improve the health of women and children around – through action and advocacy to accelerate reductions in preventable maternal, newborn and child deaths.
The movement emerged from the Child Survival Call to Action, a high-level forum convened in June 2012 by the Governments of Ethiopia, India and the United States, in collaboration with UNICEF, to examine ways to spur progress on child survival. Partners from government, civil society and the private sector emerged from the Call to Action forum with a revitalized commitment to child survival.
Attention broadcasters:  Recent video news stories and b-roll from Bangladesh, Brazil, Ethiopia and Uganda will be available at  
UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. For more information about UNICEF and its work visit:
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For further information, please contact:
Kate Donovan, UNICEF Media, 1 212 326 7452
Iman Morooka, UNICEF Strategic Communications, 1 212 326 7211 e-mail:
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United Nations Children’s Fund is the United Nations leading agency to advocate for the protection of children’s rights, to help meet their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential. UNICEF works in 191 countries through country programmes and National Committees.