Voices of Youth takes digital mapping project to the next level
NEW YORK, United States of America, 30 October 2013 – A map can represent many things – an adventure, a discovery, a journey, a return home or even a sense of order – but for one group of young people, a map also represents something else: youth empowerment.
A fellowship programme in the Niger gives rural girls access to secondary education
ZINDER, Niger, 18 October 2013 – Balkissa Ado is 17 years old. She is bright and cheerful. And she is the first girl from her village of Garin Touji, in Zinder, in the eastern part of the Niger, who has continued her studies after primary school.
Youth filmmakers to present their work at international awards ceremony
NEW YORK, United States of America, 2 October 2013 – Around the world, young people have been making one-minute videos in UNICEF-hosted OneMinutesJr. workshops. Eager to express themselves, youth participants share their viewpoints on subjects such as disabilities, juvenile justice, violence, their future and their lives. Now, 15 of these filmmakers are nominees for the 2013 OneMinutesJr. Awards and have been invited to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, to present their videos at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA).
"If something is wrong around you, if something is not working in your community, act"
NEW YORK, United States of America, 16 August 2013 – 19 August marks World Humanitarian Day, a time to pay tribute to men and women whose actions make the world a better place.
In Ghana, changing the belief in violent discipline
TAMALE, Ghana, 14 August 2013 – Emmanuel Holortu sees some of the worst cases of violence against children – when discipline goes to the extreme. Mr. Holortu is the head of the Domestic Violence and Victim’s Support Unit in Tamale. His duty is to protect children in Ghana’s Northern Region against abuse in all forms. UNICEF has supported the unit in building a national database of reported child abuse cases, as well as training its staff. The unit is playing a critical role in the strengthening of child protection systems, supported by UNICEF. Emmanuel speaks to UNICEF about his work.
Podcast #80: On International Youth Day, young activists share their views on the role of education in building peace
NEW YORK, United States of America, 12 August 2013 – International Youth Day is celebrated on 12 August every year to raise awareness about issues affecting young people and to celebrate their achievements.
The young people at the vanguard of global change
NEW YORK, United States of America, 6 August 2013 – The Youth Advocacy Group comprises 15 young people from all over the world who have committed to supporting the United Nations Secretary General’s Global Education First Initiative (GEFI).
Podcast #79: Two young activists on driving change
NEW YORK, United States of America, 26 July 2013 – Today’s generation of young people is the largest in history, and young people have positioned themselves as a vital force of economic and social progress. But what motivates young people, and what empowers them to ‘be the change they wish to see’?
Students walk a rough road to secondary education in Papua province, Indonesia
MEGAPURA, Papua province, Indonesia, 16 July 2013 – It has been four years since Markus last saw his parents, and it will be at least one more before he can go back to his village, Kalbok. But he knows he would not be in school today had he stayed home.
"Everything can change from an active mind"
PODGORICA, Montenegro, 9 July 2013 - British Paralympic gold-medalist Peter Norfolk paid a two-day visit to Montenegro in June to talk to children about his life and his sports career. His appearance was part of the national ‘It’s About Ability’ campaign initiated by UNICEF in September 2010, in partnership with the Government of Montenegro, aimed at highlighting the potential of children with disabilities.
A space for adolescents, in the midst of conflict-ravaged Homs, Syrian Arab Republic
HOMS, Syrian Arab Republic, 18 June 2013 – A recently rehabilitated centre in a relatively quiet neighbourhood in Homs City is abuzz.
Know your rights! Adolescent-friendly UNDRIP is launched in New York
NEW YORK, United States of America, 4 June 2013 – The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) is the most advanced Declaration on indigenous peoples’ rights, and its adoption in 2007 was the result of many years of work.
Clinic seeks to improve care of HIV-positive children and young adults in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 12 June 2013 – Dr. Rachel Bertrand is on a mission to improve the care of HIV-positive children and young adults in Haiti. She’s the head of an adolescent clinic in Port-au-Prince, run by GHESKIO and supported by UNICEF, that treats young patients between the ages of 10 and 24.
Voices of Youth website revamp increases opportunities for engagement
NEW YORK, United States of America, 5 June 2013 – In honour of its eighteenth birthday this year, UNICEF’s digital community for children and young people – Voices of Youth – is moving into a new chapter to take advantage of recent changes in the digital landscape and to maximize engagement opportunities for children from across the globe.
"It's about Ability!" for young filmmakers in Viet Nam
HO CHI MINH CITY, Viet Nam, 14 May 2013 – Against the hustle and bustle of city traffic, a young boy is quietly putting up a large poster on an empty wall next to a restaurant. While he brushes on the glue with his one good hand, some local boys pull a trick by pouring water on him from the roof of the building.
UNICEF and Adobe team up on digital festival to empower young people
NEW YORK, United States of America, 5 April 2013 – UNICEF has teamed up with software company Adobe Systems Incorporated (Adobe) to sponsor a festival that celebrates the achievements of young people who use technology to make creative change in their communities.
Risk is inclusive: Young Armenians portray disaster risk reduction through film
GYUMRI, Armenia, 14 March 2013 – Margarita Sargsyan, 14, and her classmates at School #1 in Gyumri, the second biggest city of Armenia, are taking part in school lessons that might save their lives. They are learning about disaster risk reduction (DRR).
Podcast #72: Khan Academy brings education to the wired masses
NEW YORK, 4 March 2013 – In 2004, hedge fund analyst Sal Khan started to make YouTube videos to help his younger cousin learn. Soon enough, Mr. Khan had developed a following, and, in 2009, he quit his job to start Khan Academy, a nonprofit organization that produces free educational videos.
Podcast #71: Ahmad Alhendawi, newly appointed UN Secretary-General's Envoy on Youth, on his new role
NEW YORK, 22 February 2013 – On 15 February 2013, the newly appointed Secretary-General's Envoy on Youth, Ahmad Alhendawi, was sworn in at United Nations (UN) headquarters. A native of Jordan, the 29-year-old Alehndawi comes to this position with extensive experience working on youth issues at the local, regional and international level. On his second day in this new position, Mr. Alehndawi spoke with UNICEF’s podcast moderator Femi Oke about his role and the post-2015 development agenda.
Pakistani youngsters tell stories of hope through one-minute films
LAHORE, Pakistan, 30 January 2013 – Mibsam Tanveer practises his karate moves as he waits for the cameraman to say the magic word: Action! The 10-year-old is acting in a film he conceived about the eternal struggle of good versus evil. His karate kicks and punches are against the manifestations of evil – social ills such as hatred and anger.
Back-breaking and life-threatening labour in the tunnels the only option, say teenagers in the State of Palestine
GAZA, State of Palestine, 9 January 2013 - In the small patch of land that runs along Gaza’s southern border with Egypt, the sound of generators roars amid hundreds of white tents planted in the landscape of sand and bullet-riddled ruins.
In Zimbabwe, the disability that prevents Munashe from using his hands proves no barrier to his education
BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe, 28 December 2012 – At King George IV School of the Disabled, 17-year-old Munashe Chikuvanyanga, a Form 1 student, is taking a final examination in mathematics.
Children affected by the recent violence in the State of Palestine are encouraged to come to terms with the past
GAZA CITY, State of Palestine, 26 December 2012 – In a small, dark flat, a dozen boys aged 8 to 13 sit in silence.
In Ghana, everybody has a voice in post-2015 consultations
TAMALE, Ghana, 14 December 2012 – What is the greatest hope for three educated young women living in northern Ghana? Esther Agana, Angelina Anabile and Bridget Teni want a decent job.
Teen Club in Namibia helps children living with HIV transition into adolescence
WINDHOEK, Namibia, 3 December 2012 - Once a month, about 50 adolescents congregate at Teen Club to discuss the challenges they face in life. They also receive health education.
Fifth anniversary of landmark agreement to end the involvement of children in armed conflict brings call for renewed commitment
NEW YORK, United States of America, 4 December 2012 – On the fifth anniversary of a landmark agreement designed to protect children from becoming involved in armed conflict, UNICEF and its partners have called for more stringent measures to address the root causes of the issue.
In Ukraine, a city adapts to the needs of children with disabilities and opens new doors for them
VINNYTSYA, Ukraine, 4 December 2012 - Oleksandra (Sasha) Berehuta, 13, recently went to school for the first time.
Youth filmmakers win 2012 OneMinutesJr. Awards
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, 3 December 2012 - Nine young filmmakers from Armenia, Kiribati, Montenegro, Romania and the United States of America traveled to Amsterdam to participate in the annual OneMinutesJr. Awards and Masterclass. They represented nine of the fifteen one-minute videos nominated for the 2012 awards.
Podcast #67: 2012 Education for All Global Monitoring Report calls for investment in developing young people's skills
NEW YORK, United States of America, 30 November 2012 – One in five young people aged 15 to 24 in 123 low- and middle-income countries has been left out of primary education and lacks skills for work. Of these people, the majority are young women.
Podcast #66: Promoting youth engagement in education and peace-building
NEW YORK, United States of America, 26 November 2012 – Engaging young people in education policies and programmes is crucial to building peace and promoting social transformation, according to a global policy forum hosted by the International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) Policy Forum in Paris, France, last month.
Children are caught in the new wave of violence in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
New York, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 19 November 2012 – They were too young to understand the violence that would kill them. Bearing the brunt of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict on their shrouds, four children from the Dalu family were buried amidst continued bombardment in Gaza City, occupied Palestinian territory. Their family home was turned into rubble by missile attack on Sunday.
In Malaysia, celebrating every child’s right to participation
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, 20 November 2012 – In the lead-up to Universal Children’s Day, 20 November, UNICEF Malaysia, together with several child-focused NGOs in Malaysia, is celebrating every child’s right to participation. Under the banner of Children4Change, the month of November has been dedicated to honour, celebrate and recognize the important role children can play in societies today.
In Maldives, community involvement and the government play a critical role in addressing the needs of islanders
Maldives, 22 October 2012 - When Fainana Mohammad was 16 years old, she was married to a man in his fifties. Over the next four years, Fainana gave birth to four children.
In Nepal, celebration focuses on enabling girls to reach their potential
KATHMANDU, Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, 18 October 2012 - On the occasion of the first International Day of the Girl Child, the global community focused its attention on the challenges girls face and promoted the empowerment of girls and the fulfillment of their rights.
Haitian students spread the message of hand-washing, a critical measure in the fight against disease
FRECHOU, Haiti, 16 October 2012 – Derilus’s mother nearly died of cholera last year in this small mountain village just outside Port-au-Prince.
In Kazakhstan, ensuring youth voices are heard in disaster risk reduction
UST-KAMENOGORSK, Kazakhstan, 17 October 2012 – In Missing you, Erkezhan Kalibekova, 16, describes the loss of her parents, who died in a flash flood in this Central Asian nation. She wishes they could have known what to do so they could have survived – and seen her grow into a teenager.
In Kenya, minors find essential care in a refugee camp supported by UNICEF
DADAAB, Kenya, 12 October 2012 - The world’s most populated refugee settlement is in Dadaab, North Eastern Province, Kenya. The Dadaab refugee complex comprises Dagahaley, Hagadera, Ifo, Ifo II and Kambioos refugee camps, with a total population of more than 470,000, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Young people bring positive change to a post-conflict area of Kyrgyzstan
KADU, Kyrgyzstan, 9 October 2012 - Erkin Japashev says he spent most of his early teenage years engaging in mindless village bouts.
Podcast #64: On World Teachers' Day, UNICEF honours teachers and their role in shaping the future
NEW YORK, United States of America, 4 October 2012 – 5 October is World Teachers’ Day. Each year, education and development organizations worldwide mobilize to honour the teaching profession and its essential role in providing quality education for future generations.
Advocates living with HIV and cricketers raise awareness about HIV through the Think Wise campaign
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, 3 October 2012 – Sarath* had been living and working abroad. Until a few years ago, he had also been a successful track and field athlete, competing in 400-metre races and the triple jump. Then he contracted HIV from a sexual partner.
Scholarships help Somali girls cross barriers to education
HARGEISA, Somalia, 2 October 2012 - For 14-year-old Filsan Faisal Ismail, who lives in Hargeisa district, Somaliland, a school degree would be a bridge to a brighter future.
United Nations Secretary-General launches global education initiative
NEW YORK, 26 September 2012 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has launched a global education initiative designed to get every child into school.
Youth affected by juvenile justice share their voices through videos
GENEVA, Switzerland and BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan, 21 September 2012 – Two years ago, Aramais, from Yerevan, Armenia, was accused of rape. He pleaded innocent. But the investigation took more than six months, during which time the pressure on the then-15-year-old boy mounted and became almost unbearable.
Palestinian adolescents celebrate the ‘International Youth Year’ by making efforts to build a stronger society
Aqaba, West Bank, 10 August 2012 – Gathered around a table, 14-year-old Majd Dabak and several adolescent girls are busy completing an intricate piece of artwork using the coloured wedges of broken floor tiles.
Podcast #61: The power of youth - celebrating International Youth Day
NEW YORK, USA, 06 August 2012 – The number of young people globally has never been higher. According to the United Nation’s Population Fund (UNFPA), there are 1.8 billion young people in the world today. For most of them, life is not easy. About half of young people survive on less than $2 a day, millions are out of school and many more face unemployment.
Female teaching recruits are agents of change in rural Nigeria
KATSINA STATE, Nigeria, 1 August 2012- The first thing that strikes you is their sense of confidence. Women with faces framed by colorful headscarves hold dynamic discussions in a packed classroom at the Isa Kaita College of Education. They consider themselves to be “village girls” but there’s nothing ordinary about them.
In Benin, a 17-year-old girl pays a heavy price for not being registered at birth
COTONOU, Benin, 31 July 2012 – Since January 2011, 17-year-old Irene Godonou A. has been an apprentice at a sewing programme in Agblangandan, located a half-hour’s drive from Cotonou.
Ordinary citizens pitch in to assist people displaced by the violence in Syria
DAMASCUS, Syria, 27 July 2012 – These have been difficult times for everyone in Damascus. Thousands of people have had to leave their homes to seek refuge in safer areas, often in schools and mosques. By the weekend, dozens of schools in and around Damascus were full of displaced families.
HIV/AIDS clubs teach children to protect themselves from the disease in Ghana
TAMALE, Ghana, 27 July 2012 – The classroom is crowded – an hour before school is meant to start for the day. Students sit in each other’s laps and squeeze three to a chair. Those at the back lean against the wall or stand on chairs.
Inclusion of youth and women essential to turning the tide against HIV, says UNICEF Deputy Executive Director
WASHINGTON, D.C., 26 July 2012 – ‘Turning the Tide Together’ is the theme of the XIX International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) taking place in Washington, D.C., this week. In a plenary session on 25 July, UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Geeta Rao Gupta and Senior Advisor on AIDS Scale-up Chewe Luo firmly established that children must be part of efforts to reverse the HIV and AIDS epidemic.
‘Shuga: Love, Sex, Money' screened at global AIDS conference
WASHINGTON, D.C., 26 July 2012 – When UNICEF and its partners, MTV and HIV-Free Generation of the United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) , wanted to inform adolescents and young people how to protect themselves against the HIV epidemic, they used one of the world’s oldest and most reliable forms of communication: drama.
Adolescents map HIV risks, part of a holistic approach to treating HIV/AIDS in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 25 July 2012 – Before an earthquake devastated Haiti in 2010, the country’s HIV and AIDS response focused largely on treatment, care and support – with much less attention given to preventing the spread of the virus.
Paralympic athletes and Ban Soon-teak launch the new ‘It’s About Ability’ campaign television commercial
CETINJE, Montenegro, 24 July 2012 – During the visit of the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to Montenegro, his wife Ban Soon-teak joined prominent young Paralympic athletes Marijana Goranovic and Ilija Tadic, Minister of Culture Branislav Micunovic, UNICEF Representative in Montenegro Benjamin Perks, Mayor of Cetinje Aleksandar Bogdanovic and Deputy Minister of Education and Sports Vesna Vucurovic in launching the new ‘It’s About Ability’ campaign television commercial in Cetinje, the Old Royal Capital of Montenegro on 22 July 2012.
Ahead of major international conference, UNICEF stresses need for innovation to eliminate new HIV infections
NEW YORK, USA, 19 July 2012 – As experts gather in Washington, D.C., on 22 July for a major international conference on rolling back the HIV and AIDS epidemic, UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake will host a leadership forum on the need for innovation to eliminate new HIV infections in children.
United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson visits programmes for adolescents, micro-enterprise
BISHOFTU, Ethiopia, 19 July 2012 – UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson visited the UNICEF-supported Bishoftu Youth Center and a micro-enterprise run by young people formerly living on the streets, on Monday, at the end of his visit to Ethiopia, where he attended the African Union Summit.
UNICEF celebrates tenth anniversary of ‘Football for Life’
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, 18 July 2012 – Hundreds of children and adolescents participated in the tenth anniversary of ‘Football for Life’ in Honduras. This programme, supported by the Central District Municipality Mayor’s Office and UNICEF, has provided access to sport, education and health care to more than 40,000 children in the most vulnerable neighbourhoods of the capital over the last decade.
UNICEF public service announcement urges focus on HIV prevention
KAMPALA, Uganda, 16 July 2012 – For the first time, UNICEF is supporting the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist of the Year Awards 2012. These prestigious awards were established in 1995 to encourage, promote and recognize excellence in journalism across the African continent.
In Fiji, a 16-year-old girl living with disabilities beats the odds to achieve her dreams
Suva, Fiji, 13 July 2012 – Sixteen-year-old Vivienne Bale always dreamed of becoming a professional table tennis player.
In Yemen, landmines and unexploded ordnance pose grave threats to children
SANA’A, Yemen, 12 July 2012 – Ten-year-old Ameed doesn’t enjoy leaving the house so much anymore, but today he has to. His father is taking him to the hospital. Two months ago, he stepped on a landmine, which destroyed one leg and maimed the other. Now, the pain has gotten worse.
UNICEF supports efforts to eradicate child marriage in Niger
MARADI, Niger, 12 July 2012 – In the small village of Madarounfa, in eastern Niger, Sani Barmo, 81, and his second wife Hadisa Abdou, 40, were preparing for their daughter Zahara’s wedding. She is 12 and a half years old.
Children exercise their ingenuity and protect their health building sanitary hand washing stations
LOMÉ, Togo, 3 July 2012 - In Togo, under-5 child mortality rates are staggering; more than one in ten die before their fifth birthday. Many of these children could be saved if simple hygiene practices, like hand-washing with soap, were adopted.
In Sierra Leone, school-led sanitation programmes improve health and save lives
MASAKA, Sierra Leone, 10 July 2012 – Memunatu Conteh, 14, lives in Masaka with her mother and four siblings. She has a busy daily routine, collecting water and sweeping her family’s compound in the morning, going to TDC Primary School Masaka to attend classes, then fetching water for the classrooms. After school, she plays football, then returns home to help her mother with the cooking.
Student penpals in Afghanistan and Japan share hope amid hardship
FUKUSHIMA, Japan/KABUL, Afghanistan, 6 July 2012 – Sara's dream of seeing Yuka has finally come true. The two teenagers were great friends although they had never actually met.
UNICEF-supported study sheds light on gangs in Honduras
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, 2 July 2012 – More than 4,700 children and young people belong to gangs in Honduras. Social exclusion and lack of opportunities are some of the factors that drive them to join these dangerous groups.
Bhutanese children’s TV programme wins UNICEF Prize at Prix Jeunesse International Festival in Germany
NEW YORK, USA, 26 June 2012 – Sonam Phuntsho is a television producer for the Bhutan Broadcasting Service. His program, ‘Tashi and Sakteng’, was selected as one of 68 finalists at the recent Prix Jeunesse International Festival, where it won the UNICEF Prize.
In Viet Nam, a UNICEF-supported youth film project raises awareness about climate change
HA NOI, Viet Nam, 21 June 2012 – This week, as Brazil hosts the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, also known as Rio+20, UNICEF is working to ensure children are at the centre of the sustainable development agenda.
In Kiribati, youth use video to show climate change is reality
NEW YORK, USA, and TARAWA, Kiribati, 19 June 2012 – Nineteen-year-old Bwenateuea Iona thinks a lot about climate change and the future of her country, the Republic of Kiribati. Kiribati’s total land mass is only about 717 square kilometres, with a population of around 100,000. The island faces further overcrowding because of shrinking coastlines due to climate change. Bwena knows that many people outside the Pacific region are not aware of Kiribati at all, but thanks to a recent OneMinutesJr. workshop held on Tarawa Island, she was able to craft a short film about her country’s beauty and its future.
In Brazil, UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake discusses social media and children’s rights in the lead-up to Rio+20
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, 20 June 2012 – This week, the eyes of the world are focused on Rio de Janeiro as Brazil hosts the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, also known as Rio+20. The conference is capturing headlines worldwide and is prominent across social media.
As strikes grip Nepal, children demonstrate against efforts to close schools
BIRATNAGAR, Nepal, 25 May 2012 – About 250 children in their school uniforms marched noisily around the central market in Biratnagar, in eastern Nepal, behind a banner proclaiming ‘Allow us to study’.
Seam Zone keeps Palestinian children in limbo, disrupting education
AL SEEFER, Hebron, Occupied Palestinian Territory, 16 May 2012 – Every morning at dawn, Khalil* wakes up and hurries to class. While his school is a mere 15-minute walk from his house, the 14-year-old boy has no idea how long it will take him to get there. The Israeli-manned Beit Yatir checkpoint, which stands between his house and Imneizil School, can turn the 15-minute walk into an hour-long wait.
In Madagascar, urban children highlight their needs through video
ANTANANARIVO, Madagascar, 14 May 2012 - Fanomezanjanahary Lantoniaina sits in the training room of the Antananarivo-based French Institute of Madagascar. Born and raised at the outskirts of Madagascar’s capital city, she eagerly awaits the start of UNICEF’s OneMinutesJr. video workshop.
UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Martin Mogwanja visits Bulgaria, highlighting the needs of children without parental care
SOFIA, Bulgaria, 8 May 2012 – UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Martin Mogwanja visited children in institutional and residential care in Bulgaria, learning more about the needs of the most vulnerable children, challenges to providing them with suitable care, and efforts to improve the systems that support them.
In Angola, a second chance for children in conflict with the law
LUBANGO, Angola, 8 May 2012 – Anton*, 15, helps take care of Fernando Sozinho, an elderly disabled man at a retirement home in Lubango, in the province of Huíla, in southern Angola.
Reflections on the UN General Assembly Special Session on Children, ten years on
KAMPALA, Uganda, 8 May 2012 – It all began at the age of 15, after winning the title of ‘best debater’ in an inter-school debating competition. After winning the award, I received a call from UNICEF informing me that I had been selected to represent Ugandan children at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children in New York in 2002. This marked the beginning of my journey as an advocate for the rights of children, youth and women.
In Guinea, UNICEF supports an innovative school programme for children in conflict-affected communities
CONAKRY, Guinea, 26 April 2012 – At a new school in the town of Pamelap, students are benefiting from the ‘Learning Along Borders’ project.
UNICEF report calls for more focus on protecting adolescents
NEW YORK, USA, 24 April 2012 – UNICEF has appealed for more to be done to protect the world’s adolescents from violence, disease and illiteracy.
Youth advocates help enrol of out-of-school children in Pakistan
LAHORE, Pakistan, 17 April 2012 – Walking through the narrow streets of Ahmedabad, an urban slum on the outskirts of Lahore, Pakistan, 22-year-old Syed Mohsin Raza saw a barefoot school-aged girl playing outside her house.
Protection and assistance for children working in DR Congo's diamond mines
BAKWA TSHIMUNA, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 10 April 2012 – “I loved to go to school, but when my father died I couldn’t pay the fees anymore. That’s why I came here,” said 15-year-old Niak, a front-line worker in one of Lupatapata’s many diamond exploration teams.
In Iran, peer training helps vulnerable children in conflict with the law
TEHRAN, Iran, 9 April 2012 – “I’m 14 and I’m here for your vacancy for a secretary,” said a shy girl in a low voice. “I’m sure you’re so fit for this job,” said the employer, touching the girl’s lap. Feeling uncomfortable the young girl excused herself, looking at her watch, but the employer grabbed her hand and asked her to stay. Then the girl then pulled away and hit the employer with her hand bag. The class roared with laughter and everyone clapped for the two budding actresses as they return to their seats.
In Uganda, UNICEF Executive Director Lake sees innovation in action, calls on global community to combat undernutrition
KAMPALA, Uganda, 4 April 2012 – The power of innovation to tackle major challenges took centre stage during UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake’s visit to Kampala this week.
In Benin, UNICEF-supported education and child rights programmes offer children a way out of exploitation
DJOUGOU, Benin, 3 April 2012 – Kabirou Sayo is only 15 years old, yet his life story could fill a book. “It happened at the end of a school day,” he explained when asked how he came to be a victim of child trafficking. ''I met a man called Baba who traffics in children. He tried to tell me the advantages of leaving for Nigeria.''
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow visits transit centres where children associated with armed conflict are getting a new start
BUKAVU, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 26 March 2012 – Under stormy skies, a hip hop crew known as the Flavour Boyz rap and harmonize to the beats of an African drum. Matching the weather, the boys’ lyrics tell stories of their tempestuous pasts – all five members of the crew had been recruited or abducted by armed forces or groups. They are now at a UNICEF-supported transit centre in Bukavu, recovering from their experiences.
In Brazil, adolescents use UNICEF's new digital mapping technology to reduce disaster risks in the favelas
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, 19 March 2012 – Ten years ago, Michael Gomes Correia used to love flying kites with his friends in the Prazeres community, one of the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. Now, the 18-year-old student is using kites – and mobile technology – to map the favelas’ socio-environmental risks and to improve the lives of children and families in his community.
Field diary: In DRC, youth advocates learn about their right to a legal identity
KINDU, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 19 March 2012 – In a grand meeting room in Kindu, Maniema Province, 10 adolescents gathered for a media training. They would be learning how to write articles and make videos documenting issues and concerns in their community.
In a historic judgment, the International Criminal Court convicts Thomas Lubanga Dyilo of recruiting children into armed conflict
NEW YORK, USA, 14 March 2012 – In a landmark ruling today, Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo was convicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) of war crimes for recruiting children into his armed movement. The verdict is the first ever delivered by the ICC, the world’s only permanent, independent war crimes tribunal, since its establishment in 2002.
One year after the quake disaster in Japan, children's photographs reveal recovery
NEW YORK, USA, 14 March 2012 – It has been one year since Japan’s ‘3/11’ tragedy, the 11 March earthquake that set off a cascade of disasters on a scale scarcely imaginable.
Transforming lives of marginalized girls through new information and communication technologies
NEW YORK, US, 9 March 2012 – How can researchers and aid organizations use technology to make the voices of the most marginalized girls heard? How can adolescent girls in the hardest-to-reach rural communities use mobile phones and the Internet to gain critical life skills?
Youth helping children and families recover from Tropical Storm Washi in the Philippines
CAGAYAN DE ORO, Philippines, 6 March 2012 – Seventeen-year-old Kim Peter Galve tutors a group of young children in a child-friendly space at an evacuation centre in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines, one of the towns worst hit by Tropical Storm Washi (locally known as Sendong) last December. Over 130 families are living in very small quarters with little comfort or privacy.
Connecting Classrooms youth advocates meet Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
MONROVIA, Liberia, and New York, USA, 28 February 2012 – When Benkie and Moses, both 18, joined the Connecting Classrooms programme in Liberia, they had no idea that they would soon meet the President of their country.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Berliner Philharmoniker gives the gift of music to Haitian schools
PORT-AU-PRINCE/JACMEL, Haiti, 23 February 2012 – While the UNICEF truck was being unloaded, dozens of heads peered through the narrow windows of the classrooms. The students from Vision Nouvelle School – which was reconstructed by UNICEF after the 2010 earthquake – were curious about the musical instruments slowly emerging from the truck.
Girl wins International Children’s Peace Prize for promoting the rights of children with disabilities
NEW YORK, USA, 22 February 2012 – Seventeen-year-old Michaela ‘Chaeli’ Mycroft was recently awarded the International Children’s Peace Prize for her work promoting the rights of children with disabilities in South Africa.
Speaking for Ourselves
NEW YORK, USA, 22 February 2012 – People all over the world hear stories, watch movies and see postcards of New York City. They recognize our skyline – the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty or the Brooklyn Bridge – on sight. But New York City is not just about the big lights, the big buildings. There are the streets, and then there are the people who walk them, and when you live here you learn that New York is just like any city, filled with people who struggle to make ends meet.
A way home for children living and working on the streets of Rwanda
KIGALI, Rwanda, 21 February 2012 – Many children who had been living and working on the streets of Kigali are now returning home, thanks to the help of centres like Fidesco.
In Turkey, a conference gives children a voice in the drafting of new constitution
ANKARA, Turkey, 2 February, 2012 – Turkey is at pivotal point in its history. Parliamentarians are poised to make fundamental changes to the country’s constitution, and children will have a rare chance to leave their stamp on it.
Youth Filmmakers win 2011 OneMinutesJr. Awards
NEW YORK, USA, and Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1 February 2012 – UNICEF and the One Minutes Foundation announced today the winners of the 2011 OneMinutesJr. Awards.
UNICEF helps Rwandan community build back after devastating earthquake
RUSIZI DISTRICT, Rwanda, 31 January 2012 – One Sunday morning three years ago, a devastating earthquake ripped through Rusizi and Nyamasheke, two of Rwanda’s south-western districts, injuring 643 and killing 36.
UNICEF aids restavek victims of abuse and exploitation in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 31 January 2012 – In 2007, 10-year-old Larissa Saint-Claire (NAME CHANGED) lived quietly with her parents in Beaumont, in southwest Haiti, when a visit from one of her sisters changed her life.
Voices of the most vulnerable children heard at Rwanda’s annual National Children’s Summit
KIGALI, Rwanda, 11 January 2012 – Once a year, the seats of Rwanda’s parliament are filled with children.
UNICEF plans to expand innovative pre-school programme
NEW YORK, USA, 9 January 2012 – A quality education is the cornerstone of every child’s rights, yet across the developing world millions of children’s futures are stunted because they don’t have the opportunity to learn.
UNICEF in 2011: The year in review
NEW YORK, 30 December 2011 – From famine in the Horn of Africa to flooding in Pakistan and uprisings across the Middle East, 2011 was a challenging year for families in the developing world.
Life-skills programme helps migrant children in China cope with urban dangers
BEIJING, China, 21 December 2011 – “Now I can have dinner with both mama and papa every night!” said 9-year-old Xue Siqi, smiling from ear-to-ear.
A child-centred approach to learning in Uzbekistan
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, 15 December 2011 – It was one of the noisiest games of the session. As a team, a group of adolescents raced to guide a long metal rod – supported by just their extended index fingers – down to the ground without dropping it. It was a test of concentration and co-operation, and it was the highlight of the morning at this UNICEF-supported team-building camp at Tashkent’s School No. 66.
Young women in India learn to express their views through film
LUCKNOW, India, 14 December 2011 – Nineteen-year-old Laxmi Nishad had wanted for years to talk about the burden of care for her five family members, including her alcoholic father. Her chance finally came at the OneMinutesJr. workshop organized by UNICEF in Lucknow, India.
Indigenous adolescents push for recognition and equity in Mexico
MEXICO CITY, Mexico, 14 December 2011 – An interactive presentation offers first-hand accounts of the daily challenges facing many of Mexico’s indigenous adolescents.
Report evaluates the state of Tanzania’s adolescents
DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, 9 December 2011 – ‘Adolescence in Tanzania’, a publication on the issues facing the country’s adolescents, was launched this week at an event attended by Speaker of the National Assembly Ann Makinda and young people from across Tanzania. The launch came days before the country celebrates the 50 years of independence, focusing attention on how far the nation has come and challenges that remain ahead.
UNICEF at 65: Looking back, thinking ahead
NEW YORK, USA, 9 December 2011 - On 11 December, UNICEF celebrates its 65th anniversary. Created in 1946 from the residual resources of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration to secure the fate of Europe’s children, few then imagined that it would still be in existence today. In the six and a half decades since it was formed, UNICEF continues to assist children affected by war and crisis, but has also taken on a much broader and ever-evolving role in international development, working across political, national and social divides to provide integrated services to children and advocate for the full spectrum of their rights.
Media workshops empower youth to address climate change in Zambia
LUSAKA, Zambia, 8 December 2011 – To 17-year-old Msonda Chibwana from Lusaka, climate change is not just a topic for debate; it is a reality that has affected his family’s livelihood and taken food from their table.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham highlights issues of street children on Philippines visit
MANILA, Philippines, 2 December 2011 – Visiting children who had formerly lived on the streets, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham spoke about the importance of caring and supportive families.
First inclusive film festival on child rights unveiled in Croatia
RIJEKA, Croatia, 2 December 2011 - For the first time in Croatia, visually and hearing-impaired children enjoyed screenings of more than 30 movies mostly produced for and by kids during a recent UNICEF-supported Child Rights Film Festival “Cinequity”.
A day care centre in Uzbekistan helps children living with HIV break their isolation
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, 30 November 2011 - The room was filled with toys, books, pictures. Indeed, everything that could possibly stimulate a child was provided and the youngsters in the noisy play session were certainly responding.
Religious leaders reinforce their commitment to ending violence against children in Mauritania
NOUAKCHOTT, Mauritania 29 November 2011 - In Mauritania, corporal punishment has long been the norm not only in Madrassas (Qur’anic schools) and non-religiously affiliated primary schools, but also in the home. It is considered an effective way to enforce discipline.
Olga’s story: Violence against women and children in Guatemala continues to devastate lives
GUATEMALA CITY, Guatemala, 28 November 2011 - Every morning Olga Vasquez* would wake up wondering if she would live to see the next day. Isolated in her home, she suffered in silence at the hands of her father’s brutal wrath, trapped in an ever-escalating cycle of abuse. Olga would also witness her father beat her mother and her siblings on a regular basis. When her mother eventually fled, leaving her children behind, Olga focused on protecting her siblings from her father’s rage.
Ancient autumn ritual brings joy and pride to Palestinian children
BALA’A, Occupied Palestinian Territory, 22 November 2011 - On the outskirts of Bala’a village in the northern West Bank, the smell of olives floats in the air as a soft Mediterranean breeze gently stirs the leaves of trees. Palestinian villagers have gathered here to harvest this ancient fruit, with the support of dozens of children brought from the UNICEF-supported Adolescent Friendly Spaces, funded by Sida, Danida and the German National Committee.
Calle 13 lend their voices to the fight against human trafficking
NEW YORK, USA, 22 November 2011 – They broke records at the Latin American Grammy’s last week by sweeping 9 awards in a night , and now Calle 13 are breaking new ground with a campaign against human trafficking and exploitation.
Podcast #49: On the anniversary of the CRC, children’s right to education remains a challenge
NEW YORK, USA, 21 November, 2011 – This year marks the 22nd anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Ratified by 193 states, the Convention has gained wide support worldwide and transformed the way children are treated around the globe. Yet children’s right to education as a fundamental human right remains a challenge – especially for those living in conflict areas.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Shakira promotes girls' education in India
UDAIPUR, Rajasthan – 21 November 2011 - Their worlds could hardly be more different – Shakira, the pop superstar and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, 34, independent, sassy, a household name – used to the glitz and glamour of the world stage. And a group of poor, young Rajasthani girls – four of them already married off before they turned 11; all of them the first females in their families ever to be educated.
Techno Girl programme teaches essential skills to young South African females
GAUTENG, South Africa, 15 November 2011 - South Africa has a shortage of skills in science, technology and engineering. But surprisingly, the country’s girls have not been encouraged to pursue these traditionally male-dominated subjects, and often perform poorly in these fields when compared with boys. This contributes to reducing career opportunities – and earning potential – that girls would otherwise enjoy. But a dynamic programme called Techno Girl is set to turn this around.
UNICEF partners with the Malaysian Government to address child poverty
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, 14 November 2011 – Since mid-2010, 14-year-old Esther Vishvani has lived with her parents and three siblings in a rented low-cost flat in Kuala Lumpur. It is one of the 1,896 units in the complex, a high-rise project that is part of the Ministry of Housing and Local Government’s initiative to provide low-cost housing for households with a monthly income of less than $478. The family moved there after they lost their previous low-cost flat to foreclosure.
As the Presidential Elections loom, change may soon come to DR Congo
KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of Congo, 3 November 2011- With the official campaign for the second Presidential Elections in Congo’s history underway, the Democratic Republic of Congo may be on the verge of a major change.
Providing vital care for Rwanda’s vulnerable children
KIVUMU, Rwanda, 1 November 2011 – Perched high in the hills above Rwanda’s Lake Kivu, a project is transforming the lives of nearly 1,000 orphans and vulnerable children.
Angola social services struggle to keep pace with swelling population
LUANDA, Angola, 31 October 2011 – Today, as the world welcomes its 7 billionth person, Angola is straining to address the needs of its rapidly expanding population.
UNICEF-IKEA partnership delivers toys to Haitian children, income to women
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 25 October 2011 – Children run after a small truck winding its way through Centre d’Hebergement Tabarre 23, a crowded camp where hundreds of people live in tents of plastic sheeting and shacks of wood and tin.
A new government program aims to provide a free education for all Haiti's children
PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti, October 21, 2011 – Lucien, 11, is the only child in his class not wearing a uniform. Sporting a t-shirt and jeans, he looks out of place amid throngs of children wearing neatly ironed, identical blue and white uniforms.
UNICEF’s Child-Friendly Schools initiative aims to improve sanitation facilities in Rwandan schools
UGESERA DISTRICT, Rwanda, 21 October 2011 – The promotion of health and hygiene in schools is an essential part of the Child-Friendly Schools (CFS) package, introduced by UNICEF to Rwanda in 2004. As a result of this initiative, children all over Rwanda are benefitting from improved sanitation facilities in their schools, which UNICEF hopes will lead to a major reduction in student drop-out rates.
UNICEF aims to expand subsidy system to reach Mozambique’s most vulnerable children
GUARA GUARA, Mozambique, 21 October 2011 – The childhood of Filiphe Luis Marime, 15, ended three years ago when his mother died after a long illness. He was left responsible for his younger siblings, one of whom was just an infant.
In Ethiopia, students learn environmental responsibility through active participation
DEBRE MARKOS, Ethiopia, 13 October 2011 – According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Ethiopia and most countries in Africa suffer from several forms of environmental degradation, leading to desertification and a detrimental impact on food and agricultural productivity and production.
UNICEF-supported programme aims to rehabilitate ex-gang members in Honduras
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, 12 October 2011 - Oscar, 25, has lived a good deal of his childhood and adolescence as a member of gang 18, one of the biggest and most violent currently operating in Honduras. He was barely nine years old when he dropped out of school and joined the gang. Alone in the world, his fellow gang members became his family.
In Sudan, a photo contest offers children an opportunity to document daily life
KHARTOUM, Sudan, 12 October, 2011 - A line of children walk to school; a group of men take shelter under a truck in order to escape the hot African sun; a child reads the Koran on a brightly-coloured prayer mat; a man leads a camel through the dust. These are just a handful of scenes from daily life in the Sudanese state of North Darfur captured by child photographers as part of an unusual photography project.
In Yemen, one female student is speaking out for girls’ education
IBB, Yemen, 3 October 2011 - There is a spirit of harmony in this classroom packed with teenage students at the Al-Hussein Ben Ali School in Al-Mazahin; where the boys happily take their place on the floor, leaving the few available desks for the girls. “As long as our sisters keep coming to school, we have no problem sitting on the floor,” said Ismail, 15, as the other boys around him all nodded in agreement.
UNICEF provides an underage miner with a second chance in DR Congo
KATANGA PROVINCE, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 21 September 2011 – Daniel, 16, has his life back after three years of working in a copper mine located in the southern section of the Democratic Republic of the Congo – one of the worst jobs on earth.
In Côte d’Ivoire, a young rape victim regains self-confidence with UNICEF support
BOUAKÉ, Côte d’Ivoire, 28 September 2011 – The first day of school should be an exciting time, full of expectancy and hope. Sadly, for young Tamira* it only manages to bring back the horrifying memory of a brutal rape she endured last October, just steps away from her grandmother’s house.
Life skills clubs teach Rwandan students universal values and leadership skills
BUGESERA, Rwanda, 26 September 2011 – Twice a week, students at the Murama Child Friendly School, in Rwanda’s Bugesera district, participate in Life Skills Clubs where they are taught to think creatively, problem-solve and build healthy relationships, while discussing topics that are often too difficult to broach in their homes.
20 Haitian children turn their stories into movies, inspiring others in the process
KENSCOFF, Haiti, 19 September 2011 – For one week, in a remote community overlooking Port-au-Prince, 20 children got together for a workshop to turn their stories into movies and make them known to a world- wide audience through the web.
Zimbabwe’s children advocate for Bill of Rights in the new Constitution
HARARE, Zimbabwe, 16 September 2011 – This past July, the 19th Session of Zimbabwe’s Junior Parliament officially opened, with the incoming Child President, Anesu Rangwani pledging a greater role by children in the crafting of a new constitution that should incorporate a separate Bill of Rights for children.
Peer leaders take the initiative on HIV prevention among young people in Lesotho
LERIBE, Lesotho, 25 August 2011 – To a rousing welcome, Limpho Moleleko, 15, takes her place at the centre of the large circle. At just under 150 cm, she is not a tall girl, yet she evidently commands great respect among her peers, who range from 11 to 15 years of age. They listen attentively to what she has to say.
UNICEF-supported initiative aims to reverse inequities facing Brazilian youth
NEW YORK, USA, 23 August 2011 – Brazil is a country populated by the outrageously wealthy and the devastatingly poor – there is little middle ground. With a total population of 193 million Brazilians, 60 million are under the age of 18, 38 per cent of whom live in poverty.
OneMinutesJr. initiative helps youth capture their viewpoints around the world
NEW YORK, USA, 19 August 2011 – June and July were busy months for UNICEF’s OneMinutesJr. initiative: Five youth video workshops took place in the USA, Haiti, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Germany, with artists teaching young people about video techniques and storytelling.
In Uganda, UNICEF and partners invest in young people
KABAROLE DISTRICT, Western Uganda, 12 August 2011 - In an outdoor market in Kabarole District, western Uganda, Veronica Nabagasela carefully sorts her produce of the day: fresh purple-colored onions, which spill out of their cloth sacks. She arranges them for customers, some of whom share a few words about the weather before moving on.
UNICEF aims to ensure the right to education for young parents in Argentina
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, 12 August 2011 – Jonathan Pavon, 17, is finishing up the last year of secondary school in Quilmes, a medium-sized municipality in the suburbs of the nation capitol of Buenos Aires. As a young father to two eight-month-old twin girls, Maia and Umma, he constantly struggles with the idea of dropping out of school and entering the work force.
Podcast #44: Young people assess the needs of their peers
NEW YORK, USA, 11 August 2011 – This week marks the end of the International Year of Youth, a year dedicated to celebrating young people’s achievements as well as creating more opportunities for youth to engage fully in the development of their societies. Although people under 24 represent nearly half of the world’s population, in many countries they often lack freedom, equal opportunities and quality education that is their basic right.
Preparedness programme helps young people to build a better future in Jordan
AMMAN, Jordan, 11 August 2011 - “I want to be a professional photographer and I will get there,” said Fadi Salameh, when asked about his dream for the future.
UN Secretary-General meets students affected by the diaster in Japan
FUKUSHIMA, Japan, 10 August 2011 – Japanese youth must combine their strengths to help facilitate the nation’s recovery, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, told a crowd of high school students this month in Fukushima City, while on a three-day trip to Japan.
Survey shows need for action on violence against children in Tanzania
DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, 9 August 2011 – Violence against children is a serious human rights, social and public health issue in Tanzania, as in many other parts of the world. Violence erodes the strong foundation that children need to lead healthy and productive lives.
UNICEF Regional Director hears the concerns of a gathering of youth in Honduras
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras 25 July 2011- Adults must make more of an effort to listen to our children, UNICEF Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, Bernt Aasen, told a gathering of fifty children and adolescents in Honduras in May.
Young reporters bring unique perspectives to child rights conference in Armenia
YEREVAN, Armenia, 6 July, 2011 – Young reporters here in the Armenian capital took over the cameras and the microphones last month at an international conference on child rights organized by UNICEF and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU).
Providing comprehensive care to young people living with HIV in Rwanda
KAYONZA, Rwanda, 30 June 2011 – A UNICEF-supported hospital in one of Rwanda’s most rural and isolated areas is offering a ray of hope to hundreds of young people living with HIV.
UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake visits youth centres rebuilding lives in Kyrgyzstan
OSH, Kyrgyzstan, 29 June 2011 – In spite of the heat, the smiles on the faces of the children performing their dance of welcome were genuine. They betrayed no hint of the psychological scars they may still be suffering.
Podcast #41: After the conflict, young people work to bring about social change in Kosovo
NEW YORK, USA, 28 June 2011 – With an estimated 53 per cent of its population under the age of 25, Kosovo is considered to be the youngest part of Europe.
In Niger, young first-time photographers see child rights from a new viewpoint
NIAMEY, Niger, 15 June 2011 – For the majority of the 20 children attending the UNICEF workshop led by long-time UNICEF photographer Giacomo Pirozzi, it was the first time they had ever gotten close to a camera.
German's story: Swapping sugar cane fields for school in Bolivia
SAN JUAN DEL CARMEN, Bolivia, 10 June 2011 – In the shadow of a sea of sugar cane fields, German Tumpanillo, 13, rattles off what he likes about his new community.
Communities mobilize to stop child labour in India
DUNGAPUR, India, 10 June 2011 – When Mukesh Somaji Damore, 12, left his village two years ago to work in the cotton fields, he missed home. Every morning, on an empty stomach, he would wake up at 4 a.m. to start pruning and pollinating cotton plants.
New water supply system transforms lives in Lao PDR
KEUNG VILLAGE, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, 9 June 2011 – It is 4 a.m. and Sinsai, 12, is beginning his day. He starts by collecting water and then helps his mother wash the dishes and clean the house.
In Algeria, UNICEF Ambassador and football star Madjid Bougherra inspires young people
ALGIERS, Algeria, 7 June 2011 – UNICEF Algeria Ambassador Madjid Bougherra recently visited the country’s second largest city, Oran, where he met with adolescents, youths and representatives of civil society and local authorities.
In South Africa, UNICEF and partners launch report on preventing HIV among young people
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, 2 June 2011 – In South Africa, the nation with the largest number of young people living with HIV, the destructive nature of the epidemic can be better understood than anywhere else in the world. According to a global report released here yesterday by UNICEF and its partners, one in three young people newly infected with the virus each year is from either South Africa or Nigeria.
Child-friendly schools inspire a brighter future for South Africa's young people
LIMPOPO PROVINCE, South Africa, 3 June 2011 – The school stands in the middle of dry grass at the end of a dirt road. Its classrooms are neatly aligned around an open courtyard where hundreds of children play noisily in their brightly-coloured uniforms.
UNICEF radio project gives voice to young Nigerians
LAGOS, Nigeria, 1 June 2011 – Disenfranchised children in Nigeria have been given a unique opportunity to exercise their right to expression through a UNICEF-supported youth radio project.
Young reporters' network empowers youth to be heard in Tanzania
DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, 27 May 2011 – Modest, 17, has been living on the streets of Moshi in the Kilimanjaro Region for the past 14 months. Despite his grim upbringing and current situation, he has found a way to get his story heard and learn new skills – by joining the Young Reporters Network.
Young Moroccans work with the government to draft youth-centred policies
BOUZNIKA, Morocco, 25 May 2011 – Young Moroccans gathered this week in the coastal city of Bouznika to play an active role in drafting a national youth strategy.
In Geneva, young people launch 'Children’s Charter' for staying safe in disasters
GENEVA, Switzerland, 23 May 2011 – Children make up more than half the population in countries predicted to be most affected by climate change and are facing increasing impacts from tumultuous events. It is estimated that as many as 175 million children a year will soon be affected by disasters.
Youth panel raises awareness on initiatives to advance the rights of indigenous peoples
NEW YORK, USA, 20 May 2011 – A compelling conversation on youth initiatives to promote and protect the rights of indigenous peoples took place yesterday at UNICEF House in New York. The dialogue aimed to raise awareness about how indigenous young people are taking leadership and making a difference in their communities around the world.
Young parliamentarians stress need for investment in technology in Namibia
WINDHOEK, Namibia, 16 May 2011 – Last week’s Third Session of Namibia’s Children’s Parliament had a clear message: information and communication technology (ICT) skills and services are essential if the country is to achieve its vision of reaching industrialized nation status by 2030.
In India, a sports programme teaches children life skills in hard-to-reach areas
CHANDRAPUR, India, 16 May 2011 – Laxmi Durge pretends to rinse lentils before a crowd of mesmerized school children. “Now this is how we cook the dahl,” the 18-year-old shouts, as she staggers under the weight of holding an imaginary pot.
In Turkey, the 'friendship train' encourages children to visit museums
ANKARA, Turkey, 12 May 2011 – Thirty-three child members of Turkey’s provincial child rights committees undertook a train journey of almost 2,000 km in April, as part of a UN joint programme targeting the development of Eastern Anatolia through cultural tourism.
UNICEF injury prevention initiative protects children's lives in Viet Nam
CAN THO, Viet Nam, 10 May 2011 – Economic and social progress in Viet Nam has brought change to people’s lives in Truong Lac commune in the province of Can Tho. Roads are now busy with trucks, cars and motorbikes. As a result, children are facing increasing risks.
A community centre inspires an adolescent girl to become an agent of change in Panama
PANAMA CITY, Panama, 5 May 2011 – Dalys Perez, 17, was seeking a positive influence in her life after her mother went to prison. Living in El Chorillo, a crime-ridden neighbourhood of Panama City, it was difficult to escape from violence. Then Dalys found her way to Movimiento Nueva Generación, a community-based organization that has changed her life.
Podcast #38: The role of education in empowering young Egyptians to shape their future
NEW YORK, USA, 2 May 2011 – The 18 days of protests in Egypt at the beginning of the year led to the fall of Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year-old regime. Although thousands of people spent days and nights protesting at Tahrir Square in Cairo, the uprising became known as ‘The Youth Revolution’ because of the prominent role of young activists.
Empowering marginalized children through photography in Mali
BAMAKO, Mali, 28 April 2011 – Hawa Coulibaly, 16, has spent the last nine months training to become a tailor, but she is also interested in photography. “By the end of the training, I hope I will know how to take pictures of my designs,” she says on the first day of the Eye See workshop.
UNICEF Executive Board visits development programmes in Bolivia
CHUÑU CHUÑUNI, Bolivia, 27 April 2011 – Officers of the UNICEF Executive Board this month received a first-hand look at how their efforts are helping to improve the lives of children in the poorest country in South America.
Goodwill Ambassador Leo Messi promotes children's right to sport in Costa Rica
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica, 19 April 2011 - He is considered the best footballer of his generation. Lionel ‘Leo’ Messi, the Argentine player and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, inspires millions around the world.
African adolescents gather to review progress on youth development
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, 18 April 2011 – About 300 adolescents from across Africa and the diaspora gathered at the African Union headquarters in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, earlier this month to review progress made by African governments in implementing youth initiatives.
Pakistan’s first female football club breaks down cultural barriers
KARACHI, Pakistan, 14 April 2011- On a scorching, early morning in Karachi, a dozen girls - some wearing shawls and burqas in the blistering heat - arrive in a large walled field, ready to practice football. Their eagerness is evident as they enthusiastically remove their burqas to reveal their practice uniforms. Hurriedly, they put on their cleats and run out to the field to meet their head coach, Sadia Sheikh.
In Benin, new monitoring tool engages illiterate parents in their children's education
SINENDE, Benin, 14 April 2011 - Bana Lafia, 12, can do something her parents cannot - read. Illiteracy is a serious problem in Benin, with nearly two-thirds of the adult population unable to read or write. Up until now, Bana’s parents have not been able to play a significant role in her education. However, a new monitoring sheet created by UNICEF in cooperation with Benin’s Ministry of Education is empowering parents like Bana’s to be active participants in her schooling.
In DR Congo, child-to-child teaching in pre-school bolsters primary school readiness
KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 8 April 2011 – DR Congo is a difficult country for children to grow up in. It’s the second poorest country in the world and more than half the adult population has either never attended school or only completed primary school.
A young man holds on to his dream amid violence in Yemen
SANA’A, Yemen, 30 March 2011 – Ahmed Al-Sayyani, 17, is holding on to his aspirations, despite the violence in his country.
'Friendship Games' to bring Haitian and Dominican youth together
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 29 March 2011 – Soccer is being used as a way to foster friendship and understanding between children in the neighbouring countries of Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
Gender equality classes help Somali teenage girls stay in school
BURTINLE, Somalia, 28 March 2011 – At first, the class of teenagers is a little shy when asked whether menstruation or early marriage is the more common reason why girls drop out of school.
A UNICEF-supported music school helps young Haitians dream of a better future
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 25 March 2011 – In one of the classrooms at Vision Nouvelle School sits a large wooden box filled with broken instruments – violins, violas, flutes and even piano parts.
Local launch of 'The State of the World's Children 2011' in Nepal
ACHHAM, Nepal, 24 March 2011 – Shuffling their feet backward and forward, a dozen boys and girls moved gracefully in circles singing a ‘deuda’, a traditional form of song and dance popular in the far western hills of Nepal.
Teen centres provide a refuge for adolescents living with HIV in Botswana
GABORONE, Botswana, 23 March 2011 – A first kiss for teenagers is often awkward but heavily romanticized in the recounting. But for Katlego, an energetic and cheerful 18-year-old, it is a painful memory of trust betrayed.
An education programme empowers adolescent girls to thrive in rural India
CHANDRAPUR, India, 17 March 2011 – In some of India’s most remote tribal areas, adolescent girls are finally being given the opportunity to thrive.
UNICEF works to convince remote communities in Pakistan to abandon child marriage
SALEWALA, Pakistan, 16 March 2011- Pakistan’s disastrous flood last July has created an opportunity to convince rural communities to stop pushing girls into child marriages.
Bangladeshi girls pitch for more recognition and opportunities
CHITTAGONG, Bangladesh, 15 March 2011 – It’s rare to see young girls playing cricket in Bangladesh, but this was one competition where they dominated the field.
Supporting victims of rape in Côte d'Ivoire
BOUAKÉ, Côte d’Ivoire, 14 March 2011 – Rose (not her real name), 12, lives in Bouaké, the second largest city in Côte d’Ivoire. This tall and gracious middle-school student is carrying upon her shoulders the heavy weight of a family secret: she was raped on Christmas Day 2010.
Young people help build lasting peace after conflict in southern Kyrgyzstan
OSH, Kyrgyzstan, 11 March 2011 – More than 300,000 people were displaced by civil conflict in southern Kyrgyzstan last June. The fighting caused a humanitarian crisis for more than a million people, including an estimated 400,000 children.
International Women’s Day in Burkina Faso
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso, 10 March 2011 - Burkina Faso has come a long way in addressing the education needs of its children. In 2000, just 44 per cent were enrolled in primary schools. By 2010, this had increased to almost 75 per cent.
International Women’s Day in Madagascar
VANGAINDRANO, Madagascar, 8 March 2011 – Today marks the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day. This year’s theme – ‘Equal Access to Education, Training and Science and Technology: Pathway to Decent Work for Women’ – focuses on promoting the education of women and girls worldwide.
Podcast #36: Facing challenges, young people become agents of change
NEW YORK, USA, 8 March 2011 – Syed Aown Shahzad, 17, is a youth activist and vocal environmentalist from Lahore, Pakistan. He contributed an essay to ‘The State of the World’s Children 2011’ about the impact of climate change on children living in developing nations.
Young people raise awareness about climate change in the Pacific atoll nation of Kiribati
TARAWA, Kiribati, 4 March 2011 – In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, the young people of Kiribati are experiencing a disaster that is slowly and steadily eroding their culture and home.
Adolescents search for normalcy through education in DR Congo
WALIKALE, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 4 March 2011 – Twelve-year-old Ujumbe Kiwabantu’s life was abruptly uprooted two years ago by civil conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo). She and her family have traumatic memories of armed forces repeatedly looting their home and setting others in their village on fire.
Egypt's young people play critical role in defending rights and shaping the future
CAIRO, Egypt, 2 March 2011 – Passionate, mature, dignified, inspirational. These are just some of the words used to describe the youths who led the recent uprising in Egypt. Their actions show a new generation of young people who are pro-active in defending their rights and dignity.
Redesigned 'Voices of Youth' website helps young people build stronger communities
NEW YORK, USA, 1 March 2011 – Emer Mae Butler, 14, from Krugersdorp, South Africa, is a fan of Voices of Youth – also known as VOY – UNICEF’s newly revamped online network for children and young people around the globe.
Jean's story: An adolescent girl’s belief in education provides hope in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 25 February 2011 – When we met Jean Bernite just six weeks after the January 2010 earthquake here, she was living in a tent with four family members. She was no longer attending school but was eager to return to the classroom.
Flagship report launched: Adolescents are key to prosperity and equity
NEW YORK, USA, 25 February 2011 – Young people are the key to a more equitable and prosperous world, according to UNCEF’s new flagship report, ‘The State of the World’s Children 2011 – Adolescence: An Age of Opportunity,’ launched today at UN headquarters in New York.
Education plants the seeds of a better future for adolescents in Sierra Leone
KAILAHUN, Sierra Leone, 25 February 2011 – In this rural district of Kailahun, everyone takes part in farming on some level, whether you are a child helping your mother sort seeds or an old man weeding a field. However for David Vandy, 15, farming is no longer just about putting food on the table. It is about his education.
UNICEF dedicates 'The State of the World's Children 2011' to adolescents
NEW YORK, USA, 24 February 2011 - Mohamed, 17, and Hassan, 16, stand in a queue in front of the International Organization for Migration in Haradh, Yemen. The two Ethiopian boys are among the thousands of migrants that have been stranded in the country since last year.
Non-formal education in the Middle East: Giving adolescents a second chance
AMMAN, Jordan, 24 February 2011—In May 2000, two 14-year-old Jordanian boys asked for my help in finding them vocational training. They had dropped out of school in third grade, and the skills they had learned in their five years on the streets would not help them build a promising future. The short training courses they were eligible for would not provide the diploma a good job required, and they needed formal tenth-grade certification to enroll in diploma-level vocational courses.
Gender disparities: Empowering adolescent girls for social change
AHMEDABAD, India, 23 February 2011 On the streets of Ahmedabad, India, hearing the cheerful shouts of adolescent boys playing gully cricket is as common as seeing girls of the same age waiting in long queues to fill water containers or walking miles to collect fodder or fuel, fearful of any delay that may entail reprimands.
Promoting Open Debate: New technologies advance adolescents’ civic responsibility
NEW YORK, USA, 22 February 2011 - New information, communications and media technologies have made it easier for adolescents to participate in the debates that determine public policy. Youth participation not only increases the likelihood that policymakers will respond to young people’s needs and concerns, it also helps adolescents better understand diverse viewpoints. It teaches them to persuade using the force of argument, not the argument of force.
In Malaysia, a local child council empowers young people through participation
PETALING JAYA, Malaysia, 31 January 2011 – Children living in Petaling Jaya, near Malaysia's capital, Kuala Lumpur, are now represented in the City Council. The Petaling Jaya Child Council (PJCC) was launched on 15 January, enabling children from the community to voice their opinions and participate in local development.
One year on, UNICEF revisits two young Haitian quake survivors and best friends
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 14 January 2011 – About a month after the earthquake in Haiti, a UNICEF communications team met and interviewed two best friends who survived the disaster: Miratson Guerrier, now 14, and his neighbour Ricardo Rocourt, 13. We recently revisited the boys to see how they and their families were faring.
Haitian youths use hip-hop to inspire earthquake recovery
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 13 January 2011 – An enterprising group of 10 boys who were separated from their parents during the January 2010 earthquake are using hip-hop to inspire their fellow Haitians to rebuild the country.
UNICEF helps to begin changing attitudes towards early marriage in Niger
MARADI, Niger, 23 December 2010 – Sahira, 15, sits in front of a social worker at the Office of the Promotion of Women and the Protection of Children with a blank stare on her face. She has run away after being forced to marry a man she had never met who is three times her age.
National Children’s Forum brings young voices to Niger's electoral process
NIAMEY, Niger, 20 December 2010 – A quiet revolution is taking place in the unlikeliest of places, with children at its forefront. “I want our rights to be respected and ask that the new president build schools with well-built classrooms,” said Hourey Amadou, 12, who was among the 161 participants in a National Children’s Forum held late last month in Niger’s capital, Niamey.
First municipal council of children and young people elected in Morocco
OUISSELSATE, Morocco, 8 December 2010 – Morocco recently launched its first Municipal Council of Children and Youth in the rural community of Ouisselsate, located in Ouarzazate Province. It is the first of five such councils that will be launched under the framework of a UNICEF-supported ‘Child-Friendly Cities’ initiative to protect and promote child rights in the country.
Young people celebrate child rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
JERUSALEM, 7 December 2010 – Whirling and stamping, his feet carrying him through the steps of the traditional Palestinian ‘Dabkeh’ dance, Hamoudeh Rantisi, 11, smiles out at the audience.
Children’s photos capture life on the street in Bangladesh
DHAKA, Bangladesh, 1 December 2010 – Cities in Bangladesh are overcrowded with dense slums, squatter settlements and pavement dwellings, each home to thousands of children. In the absence of parental supervision, children who live on the street are forced to work long hours – sometimes in hazardous environments – in order to support themselves. Commonly deprived of their right to an education, they must fend for themselves in a predatory and unforgiving environment.
Goodwill Ambassador Maria Guleghina presents at Junior Eurovision, tours health centres
MINSK, Belarus, 23 November 2010 - World famous soprano and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Maria Guleghina, recently journeyed to Minsk, located in the Republic of Belarus, to present UNICEF awards to this year’s participants of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest (JESC). In addition, the opera singer toured several local health facilities catering to adolescents and special needs children.
Schoolchildren in Mozambique pick up radio skills as they learn about their rights
CHIBUTO, Mozambique, 18 November 2010 – Raissa, 12, is a radio reporter and one of the young hosts of a weekly programme called ‘Voices of Youth’ in Mozambique’s Chibuto district.
Senegalese girls forced to drop out of school and work as domestic help
DAKAR, Senegal, 16 November 2010 - When she was eight years old, Aisatou Ba quit school and began working as a maid. Though she begged her parents to let her stay in school, the economic pressure on the family proved too strong. The Senegalese teenager has been cleaning houses and cooking in restaurants instead of studying textbooks and learning arithmetic for the past seven years.
UNICEF supports a pitch for peace at cricket camp in war-torn Afghanistan
JALALABAD, Afghanistan, 15 November 2010 – In a city where girls are rarely seen on the streets without burquas, this past 11 October marked a special day for 140 girls here, as they donned cricket whites and took to the pitch to learn the basics of batting and bowling.
Young filmmakers honoured at UNICEF-supported 'OneMinutesJr.' Awards
NEW YORK, USA, 10 November 2010 – Carlon Knight, 17, of Antigua didn’t have to think hard to decide on the topic for the film he was making at a ‘OneMinutesJr.’ youth video-production workshop held in Barbados in 2009. He wanted to focus on the problem of absent fathers – an issue that affects many young people in his community.
In Angola, UNICEF-supported programmes spread HIV awareness through sports
VIANA, Angola, 21 October 2010 – If it's Saturday, there’s football in Angola. Today the match is a derby between the ‘Black Eagles’ and ‘Otrack’ – both local girls’ teams.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Yuna Kim takes a stand for peace and development
NEW YORK, USA, 17 September 2010 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and international figure skating star Yuna Kim brought a message of hope and commitment to the United Nations in New York today, joining in celebrations of the International Day of Peace and appearing in a new video spot on meeting the needs of the world’s most vulnerable children.
Emerging leaders: Timor-Leste inaugurates young parliamentarians
DILI, Timor-Leste, 1 September 2010 – As the day breaks in Dare ‘suco,’ or village, a jovial Rogue Santiago Braga De Araujo, 15, cannot wait to make the 30-minute bumpy road trip down the hill to the capital of Timor-Leste, Dili.
Life skills courses brighten the future for Syrian Arab Republic's refugees
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 1 September 2010 – Ibrahim, a refugee from Iraq, admits that he hasn’t been this nervous since his arrival in Syria. His eyes flicker around a large room in the heart the Jaramana refugee suburb, which is filled to capacity with other young refugees.
World Youth Conference in Mexico spotlights youth in development agenda
LEON and MEXICO CITY, Mexico, 30 August 2010 – Forty-five per cent of the world's population – a staggering 3 million people – are under the age of 25.
Media initiative brings Zambian youth to the front-line of climate crisis
LUSAKA, Zambia, 27 August 2010 – When Daniel Sichinga, 16, recently gathered a group of young Zambian Climate Ambassadors to record a radio talk show, he asked one guest, 17-year-old Tendai Nyirenda, about a burning issue in her community: climate change.
International Year of Youth launches in Syria with colourful events
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 25 August 2010 – At a ceremony in Syria to launch the International Year of Youth, the importance of fostering dialogue and mutual understanding among the country’s youth inspired an enthusiastic response.
In remote Afghan mountains, Youth Information and Contact Centre empowers youth
DAIKUNDI PROVINCE, Afghanistan, 19 August 2010 - Kamela, 15, lives in the Shahristan district of Afghanistan’s Daikundi province – a remote mountain area of the country’s central region. In an unprecedented journey, she recently travelled eight hours on foot and by car to reach Nili, the provincial capital, to participate in an innovative training session for young people.
Youth radio programme teaches technical production and life skills
SARAVANH PROVINCE, Lao People's Democratic Republic, 16 August 2010 – This month, UNICEF’s interactive online community platform, Voices of Youth (VoY), and the International Children’s Day of Broadcasting (ICDB) to explore an empowering youth radio project in Laos.
In video shorts, young Ukrainians tell their stories about HIV and AIDS
KIEV, Ukraine, 9 August 2010 – Fifteen children 12 to 18 years of age from across Ukraine recently gathered in the capital, Kiev, to participate in an innovative video workshop.
Supporting mothers to prevent child abandonment in Morocco
MARRAKESH, Morocco, 4 August 2010 - Karima (not her real name), 23, is struggling with the consequences of an unwanted pregnancy alone. The baby’s father left her, and to hide her situation she left her parents’ house in the Marrakesh countryside. Due to traditional views on pregnancy outside of marriage and fears of the repercussions, she has not told her father, only her mother.
Delegation from Nepal sees child-rights initiatives supported by UNICEF in Brazil
BRASILIA, Brazil, 28 July 2010 – Senior representatives of the Government of Nepal visited Brazil recently to learn about initiatives developed by UNICEF and its partners here. The visit was an example of cooperation between developing countries, in which they share knowledge, experiences and best practices on various aspects of development.
African Youth Forum delegates set to deliver their call to action to AU Summit leaders
MUNYONYO, Uganda, 23 July 2010 – Bonolo Cebe, 18,of South Africa is one of the three young delegates selected by their peers to present a call to action to leaders at the 15th session of the Assembly of African Union Summit this Sunday, 25 July. Over 100 young people from 40 countries drafted the message earlier this week in Uganda, at the first-ever African Youth Forum, or AYF.
UNICEF supports efforts to end sexual harassment of girls and women in Bangladesh
NARSINGDI, Bangladesh, 21 July 2010 – Hundreds of people, many of them adolescents, rallied in the streets of Narsingdi district recently to call for an end to ‘Eve teasing’ – a term used to describe the public bullying of girls and women by boys and men.
African Youth Forum issues call to action for leaders at Uganda summit
ENTEBBE, UGANDA, 20 July 2010 – A group of more than 100 young people from across Africa are ready to deliver a clear message to leaders of the countries in the African Union, who will be attending the 2010 AU Summit in Kampala, the Ugandan capital.
Ugandan delegates prepare to speak out on development at first African Youth Forum
KAMPALA,Uganda, 13 July 2010 – At first glance, it seems an ordinary day in the UNICEF country office here – until the cameras zoom in and reporters begin interviewing young people selected as the Ugandan delegates to the first-ever African Youth Forum, or AYF. The Forum will be held in Entebbe from 17 to 19 July.
UNICEF advocate and author Ishmael Beah pens high-profile op-ed on child soldiers
N’DJAMENA, Chad, 28 June 2010 – On the inside walls of one of the centres for former child soldiers in N’Djaména, the capital of Chad, are images that start with the horrors of war and gradually become those of anticipated hopes and dreams.
UNICEF Syria supports vocational training centre for adolescent refugees at risk
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 22 June 2010 – Rana came to Syria in 2005. She and her family joined the ever-increasing Iraqi community in the Jaramana suburbs of Damascus. Heavily dependent on humanitarian aid and deprived of any regular income, the family exhausted their savings last year, and Rana’s parents had to return to Iraq temporarily.
Multimedia initiative encourages discussion among Nepal's young people
KATHMANDU, Nepal, 6 May 2010 – Around the world, the vast expansion of communication technology – including computers, mobile phones and the Internet – is changing lives. More people than ever before are able to communicate across local and international borders.
International seminar puts girls' rights in the spotlight as key to development
NEW YORK, 26 April 2010 – International experts have gathered in New York this week to find new ways to strengthen the rights of adolescent girls.
Justice for girls in Afghanistan
MAZAR-E-SHARIF, Afghanistan, 20 April 2010 – The six girls huddle together over tea, giggling and pulling at each other’s veils and talking ‘girl talk’. They’re keen to show off their English, talking about their favourite Bollywood stars and imitating their moves. But under the veils, behind the lightness, there’s tragedy here.
Children’s Parliament holds inaugural session in Swaziland
MBABANE, Swaziland, 25 March, 2010 – Earlier this month, 65 Swazi children traded places with members of the country’s House of Assembly, sitting in the lower-house chamber for Swaziland’s inaugural Children’s Parliament.
Broadcasters prepare for the International Children's Day of Broadcasting
NEW YORK, USA, 5 March 2010 - Around the world, broadcasters and youth media organizations are preparing to celebrate the 19th annual International Children's Day of Broadcasting, taking place Sunday, 7 March. This year's theme, 'All Rights All Children,' continues UNICEF's celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Child-rights video contest winner focuses on the right to education
NEW YORK, USA, 20 November 2009 – A young girl in India longs to be in school. She watches through the window and the gracious teacher calls her in. But when she sits down, the boys shift over to one side to be away from her.
UNICEF Zambia Child Ambassadors comfort their peers through service project
LUSAKA, Zambia, 25 September 2009 – Earlier this month, several UNICEF Child Ambassadors took time to spend an afternoon with children at the Zambian-Italian Orthopaedic Hospital in Lusaka. During the visit, the ambassadors interacted with their hospitalized peers by reading to them from locally published storybooks.
Young people appeal to world leaders at UN Summit on Climate Change
NEW YORK, USA, 22 September 2009 – A delegation of young people appealed to world leaders for meaningful action today at the UN Secretary-General’s Summit on Climate Change. The group of 13 young participants, ranging from 14 to 18 years of age, asked leaders to come together and make a difference on environmental sustainability.
UNICEF Syria 'training of trainers' workshops help young Palestinians make a difference
NEIRAB, Syria, 27 August 2009 – During six days of intensive sessions in Neirab, 20 Palestinian adolescents attending a recent UNICEF 'training of trainers' workshop learned various techniques for mobilizing young people to become more involved in their communities.
Teen editorial from Jamaica: ‘Children have rights, too. Protect them!’
KINGSTON, Jamaica – Jamaica has been subject to human rights criticisms in regards to our level of intolerance for sexual diversity, poor rehabilitation facilities, an overburdened and inefficient judicial system, human security and the continued impunity of police officers and state representatives who commit crimes.
Helping young people overcome drug addiction in Malaysia
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, 22 July 2009 – Sharkozy (not his real name) began living the 'high society' life 10 years ago, when he started experimenting with marijuana and Erimin-5 with the local boys in his neighbourhood. He then spent the next three years dabbling in various illegal substances, including heroin and morphine.
‘Junior 8’ youth delegates present views to G8 world leaders in Italy
L'AQUILA, Italy, 9 July 2009 – A select group of 14 young people have met with top leaders at the G8 Summit here yesterday and urged them to act on a set of recommendations aimed at protecting child rights around the world.
Troubled young people get a second chance in Guyana
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, 9 July 2009 – Carletta is just 16, but she has already confronted many challenges and brutalities in life. She ran away from home several times and became involved in dangerous activities. Eventually, her father, a single parent, realized he was no longer able to cope with her behaviour.
Young people open Junior 8 Summit in Rome
ROME, Italy, 7 July 2009 – Bright young minds from around the world have gathered for the Junior 8 Summit, a week-long conference for young people to exchange and debate ideas about how to best improve global conditions for children.
UNICEF contest invites youth videos on children’s rights; deadline 1 August
NEW YORK, USA, 30 June 2009 – People all over the world can talk about children’s rights, but it is children themselves who have firsthand experience on the subject. In honour of the 20th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) – which will be observed later this year – UNICEF is inviting young people around the world to share their thoughts on the issue in video form.
UNICEF Executive Director concludes landmark Syria visit
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 30 June 2009 – UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman concluded a landmark tour of Syria by commending UNICEF’s Syrian partners for their accomplishments benefiting children and young people.
Youth leaders gear up for Junior 8 Summit, to parallel upcoming G8 meeting in Italy
NEW YORK, USA, 26 June 2009 – If you had the opportunity to tell the world’s leaders what they should do to solve global problems, what would you say? That’s the question youth delegates to the Junior 8 Summit will wrestle with as they prepare to meet with presidents and prime ministers from the G8 industrialized nations in Italy next month.
‘The Youth Times’ newspaper speaks volumes for Palestinian teenagers
NEW YORK, USA, 25 June 2009 – Although much of the news from the Occupied Palestinian Territory is focused on violence and conflict, there is different, yet just as important, reporting happening on the ground in the region – reporting from a distinctly youth perspective.
Panel explores advances and challenges facing indigenous youth in a digital world
NEW YORK, USA, 22 May 2009 – UNICEF sponsored a panel with representatives of various indigenous youth groups at its headquarters in New York yesterday, as a side event of the Eighth Session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
Teenager advocates for child-care reform at regional forum in Kyrgyzstan
BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan, 14 May 2009 – Maftuna, now 15, was only four years old when her mother died, but she remembers many things from her childhood.
Rwandan teenager does her part to commemorates 15th anniversary of genocide
NEW YORK, USA, 17 April 2009 – Vanessa Umubyeyi, now 15, was only a month old when the Rwandan genocide began, but she knows the stories by heart.
At Inter-Parliamentary Union conference, a call to action on adolescent girls’ rights
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, 9 April 2009 – Adolescent girls in developing countries are the world’s greatest untapped resource for stability and growth. As economic actors and future mothers, safe, healthy, educated, economically empowered girls have the means to escape poverty and ignite progress.
'A minute for my rights' youth video project in Argentina
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, 1 April 2009 – Young people have discovered an important medium for promoting children's rights in Argentina. Since 2005, 'A minute for my rights' (Un minuto por mis derechos) has brought creative children together to make one-minute films.
Ghanaian youth radio host speaks out on gender equality
NEW YORK, USA, 20 March 2009 – The 53rd session of the Commission on the Status of Women wrapped up at UN headquarters in New York last week. Among its attendees this year was Edith Asamani, 18, a youth radio host from Ghana.
Fighting drug addiction among Maldives youths
MALE, Maldives, 11 March 2009 – In the tropical tourists’ paradise of Maldives, beyond the waving palms and turquoise pools, lurks the ugly problem of youth drug addiction.
In Amman, UNICEF regional media awards honour coverage of adolescents
AMMAN, Jordan, 2 March 2009 – The first UNICEF Regional Awards for Media on Child Rights were handed out last week at an official ceremony in Amman, under the patronage of Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, UNICEF’s Eminent Advocate for children.
UNICEF rehabilitating learning centres for adolescents in Gaza
JERUSALEM, 23 January 2009 – The recent and extreme levels of conflict in Gaza have affected the lives of some 800,000 children and young people. Many have lost their schools, health facilities, play areas and even neighbourhoods, which have been destroyed in the violence.
Radio project gives a voice to indigenous children in Mexico
TENANGO, Mexico, 21 January 2009 – When a 2006 teachers' strike in the State of Oaxaca caused students to miss school for several months, UNICEF and its education partner, Ciesas, saw an opportunity to help children in the poorest and most vulnerable communities. The resulting project gave these children their own radio programme and, more important, a voice.
Youth radio initiative spreads health messages in Lao People's Democratic Republic
LUANG PRABANG, Lao People's Democratic Republic, 16 January 2009 – The thought of going live on the air might be daunting to most people, but not to Pany Vilaychith, 18. Despite her youth, she is the lead presenter on 'Smile of Hope', a weekly broadcast from a radio station covering Luang Prabang province, a mountainous area of northern Lao PDR.
As UN aid operations are suspended, a Gaza teenager describes life amidst conflict
NEW YORK, USA, 8 January 2009 – As fighting in the Gaza Strip continued into its 13th day today, UN humanitarian assistance in the territory was suspended for an indefinite period because of the danger facing aid workers there.
UNICEF unites young leaders from eight North Caucasus regions for peace
NALCHIK, Russian Federation, 12 December 2008 – Last month, on the International Day for Tolerance, roughly 150 volunteers and children from 8 regions of the North Caucasus gathered in Nalchik for the first-ever Congress of Young Peace Builders.
Speak Africa initiative brings together youth activists to fight for the rights of African youth
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, 12 December 2008 – On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Speak Africa youth activists from 13 African countries joined the African Union to call for urgent action to protect the rights of young people.
Children of Iraq make an ‘Appeal’ to government leaders
BAGDHAD, Iraq, 12 December 2008 – The Iraq Children’s Appeal, crafted by and for young people, was launched in Baghdad recently, as part of a special project between UNICEF and the non-governmental organization Al-Amal to help promote a culture of children’s rights in Iraq
Young Iraqi filmmaker wins 'OneMinutesJr.' Award
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, 11 December 2008 – Mohammed Majid al-Ghazali, age 15, is an Iraqi currently living in Jordan. He just won the 2008 'OneMinutesJr.' award. His winning film, Accident, was produced during a UNICEF 'OneMinutesJr.' workshop in Amman, Jordan, where youth were asked to make films that reflected the rights from the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Nepal’s Young Peer Supporters fight against sexual exploitation of children
KATHMANDU, Nepal, 10 December 2008 – Last week, organizations and groups of young people from around the world gathered in Brazil to bring attention to the problem of child trafficking and sexual exploitation at the World Congress Against the Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents. One young activist from Nepal, 16-year-old Parwati, spoke to UNICEF Radio before the Congress about the efforts she is making to help children in her country.
New PSA asks young people to demand that their leaders ratify Youth Charter
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, 10 December 2008 – Thirty-six youth activists from 13 African countries have gathered in Johannesburg to mark today’s 60th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The group – joined by UNICEF Regional Ambassador Yvonne Chaka Chaka and UNICEF Advocate for Youth and South African television and radio personality Kabelo “KB” Ngakane – also calls on African leaders to protect the rights of young people by ratifying the African Youth Charter.
Launch of the 'StopX' online community to fight child sexual exploitation
NEW YORK, USA, 28 November 2008 – To coincide with the opening of World Congress III on the Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents in Brazil, UNICEF and partners launched StopX.org, an online community of young activists fighting sexual exploitation of children and adolescents.
World Congress III Against the Sexual Exploitation of Children opens in Brazil
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, 26 November 2008 – Some 3,000 participants from more than 125 countries gathered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for last night’s opening ceremony of the third World Congress Against Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents.
Latin American pop group Kudai visits Panama to highlight the needs of indigenous populations
PANAMA CITY, Panama, 24 November 2008 – Latin Grammy Award-Nominated Chilean pop group Kudai visited the autonomous territory of Kuna Yala recently in order to highlight the needs and concerns of indigenous and excluded populations.
Protecting girls and women from sexual violence in post-war Liberia
MONROVIA, Liberia, 14 November 2008 – Peace came to Liberia in 2003, after 14 years of brutal, devastating civil war. Since then, progress to rebuild the country has been significant: the restoration of infrastructure, public services, the economy and the rule of law is well under way.
Children’s Parliament of Guinea-Bissau presents its ‘Manifesto’ to candidates
BISSAU, Guinea-Bissau, 10 November 2008 – The Children’s Parliament of Guinea-Bissau last week presented its ‘Manifesto’ of young people’s concerns to 19 political parties and two coalitions campaigning for legislative elections that will take place here on 16 November.
Children find their voice at Caribbean Child Research Conference in Jamaica
KINGSTON, Jamaica, 6 November 2008 – The Caribbean Child Research Conference has become a milestone event that brings together academics, child-focused agencies, government officials and children to examine the latest research on issues affecting children.
Fond memories and clear challenges for 2008 J8 Summit delegates
CHITOSE, Japan, 28 July 2008 – For 39 young people who gathered in Chitose on the island of Hokkaido, Japan, earlier this month, the G8 meeting of world leaders was more than just a distant, high-level international event.
Photo exhibition in Mozambique shows impact of AIDS through the eyes of children
MAPUTO, Mozambique, 14 July 2008 – Last year, 21 children aged 11 through 17 took to the streets of Maputo with cameras to document their lives and their communities. Over the course of two weeks, with help from a team of professional photographers, they opened the doors of their homes and learned how to tell their stories through the camera's lens.
J8 delegates’ action plan grabs the attention of G8 leaders
CHITOSE CITY, Hokkaido, Japan. 8 July 2008 – After days of intense sessions, during which they debated and then drafted their ‘Chitose Declaration’ on issues of concern to the world’s children, 9 of the 39 Junior 8 Summit delegates here boarded a bus yesterday to go to the site of the G8 Summit of world leaders.
Junior 8 Summit delegates use online workspace to advance their viewpoints
CHITOSE CITY, Hokkaido, Japan, 6 July 2008 - Every evening after dinner they begin to congregate in the dimly lit lobby of the hotel. Small groups of teenagers sit with their laptops open, their faces tinted blue by the computer screens, typing busily as a collective ‘click-click’ fills the room.
Young delegates’ hopes are high as ‘Junior 8’ Summit opens in Japan
HOKKAIDO, Japan, 3 July 2008 – The Junior 8 Summit opened yesterday with thunderous performance by young local drummers at a traditional ceremony in Hokkaido, Japan. The meeting brings together a group of children and young people who promise to make an even bigger noise on the world stage.
Arab Media Award on Child Rights initiated to honour outstanding achievements
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, 30 June 2008 – A new annual award is being initiated this year to recognize media stories that accurately depict the situation of children and young people in the Arab nations of the Middle East.
Indigenous youth make their voices heard at global caucus
NEW YORK, USA, 2 June 2008 – At the seventh session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, held in New York in April, the youngest generation of indigenous people around the world came together as one body to highlight the problems they face.
UNICEF and British Telecom launch ‘edu-communication’ project in São Paulo
SÃO PAULO Brazil, 11 April 2008 – The excitement was palpable at the recent launch of the new UNICEF and British Telecom youth participation programme focusing on education and communication in low-income communities in Brazil.
UNICEF’s ‘Story Jam’ looks to expand outlets for youth communication
NEW YORK, USA, 10 April 2008 – A talented group of computer programmers, designers, content developers and hardware experts recently gathered at UNICEF headquarters for ‘Story Jam New York’, a three-day event focused on developing new outlets for youth communication.
Denise’s story: Small grant brings wealth of knowledge to Mozambican youth
NEW YORK, USA, 17 March 2008 – The 52nd session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, which concluded recently in New York, could have been just another annual gathering at the United Nations where ambitious commitments are made but soon forgotten – until the next meeting, when they are made yet again.
UNICEF and youth: Working together for 'A World Fit for Children'
NEW YORK, New York, 15 January 2008 – The year 2007 marked the five-year anniversary celebration of the UN plan of action, ‘A World Fit For Children’ – a commitment by world leaders to protect and promote child rights.
‘Our Stories’ project: Children around the world share and connect online
NEW YORK, USA, 10 December 2007 – A multitude of voices have joined together to launch ‘Our Stories’ – an initiative that will collect, preserve and share stories from young people around the world.
Virtual video-making in Teen Second Life spreads the message on child rights
NEW YORK, USA, 20 November 2007 – To mark the 18th anniversary of the Convention of the Rights of the Child (CRC), a group of teenage videographers has given an online screening of their short videos made in the virtual world of Teen Second Life.
Child-friendly journalism gives young people a voice in Iraq
AMMAN, Jordan, 29 June 2007 – Mohammad’s TV show, ‘Sabah El Kheir Mosul’ (Good Morning Mosul), is different than most Iraqi news programmes. To balance the grim daily reports of bombings and violence, Mohammad, 28, is trying a new focus – the lives of children.
Junior 8 delegates present youth perspectives to G8 world leaders
NEW YORK, USA, 7 June 2007 – For nine young people participating in the Junior 8 Summit in Germany, today was the opportunity of a lifetime.
J8 Summit opens in Germany
WISMAR, Germany, 3 June 2007 – Young people from Group of 8 industrialized countries and the developing world, as well as German federal and state government officials, have gathered here for the official opening of the Junior 8 Summit – the international youth conference with an agenda that parallels the G8 Summit.
Young people gather to debate global issues at Junior 8 Summit in Germany
NEW YORK, USA, 1 June 2007 – Young people from Group of 8 industrialized nations and the developing world are gathering in Germany to participate in this year’s Junior 8 Summit. Mirroring the G8 Summit, which will be commenced on 6 June, the J8 is aimed at empowering young people to take part and voice their opinions in global affairs.
Children in Barbados have their say on development goals
BRIDGETOWN. Barbados, 30 May 2007 – With the timeline for meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) drawing closer, Barbadian teenagers recently had the opportunity to question their government leaders about what was being done to ensure that Barbados reaches the goals – especially MDG 1 on eradicating extreme poverty and hunger.
Digital Diary: Pranav explores the issue of drug use among his teenage peers
NEW YORK, USA, 20 April 2007 – Pranav, 14, is concerned about the risk of drug use among his peers and wants to better understand the issue.
At Global Kids Conference, high school students debate environmental issues
NEW YORK, USA, 26 March 2007 – Six hundred teenagers gathered in New York on Friday to debate environmental issues at the 2007 Global Kids Annual Conference entitled, ‘Do you know where your environment is?’ While experts from UNICEF and other organizations helped to guide discussions, the event was entirely youth-organized and youth-led.
Facing discrimination, Chile’s Mapuche youth speak out
TEMUCO, Chile, 8 March 2007 – On the outskirts of Temuco, the capital of Cautín Province, UNICEF recently organized a meeting to provide Mapuche indigenous youth an opportunity to meet, discuss and exchange ideas with their peers from communities in different parts of Chile.
Marginalized girls take centre stage at UN panel on unleashing their potential
NEW YORK, USA, 6 March 2007 – A panel of young women dedicated to improving the lives of marginalized girls shared their experiences during a panel discussion at United Nations headquarters this afternoon.
In the virtual world of Second Life, teens tackle real children’s issues
NEW YORK, USA, 24 January 2007 – Voices of Youth, UNICEF’s own online forum, recently helped reach hundreds of children from around the globe with a groundbreaking project in Teen Second Life, the under-18 corner of the increasingly popular virtual world, Second Life.
‘Our Voice’: UNICEF and Lebanon TV launch youth-produced series
NEW YORK, USA, 1 December 2006 – The Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation (LBC) and UNICEF are showcasing the viewpoints of the country’s million-strong youth audience with a new television series called ‘Sawtna’, which means ‘Our Voice’.
‘Junior 8’ Youth Forum opens in Russia
PUSHKIN, Russia, 10 July 2006 – With the goal of influencing world leaders, 64 young people from G8 member countries today opened the ‘Junior 8’ Youth Forum, or J8, in Pushkin, near St. Petersburg, Russia.
Youth Assembly 2005 at the United Nations: Young people making a difference
NEW YORK, 12 August 2005 – The United Nations’ Youth Assembly is a special conference held annually at UN headquarters, where young people from all over the globe get together to discuss how they can make a difference in today’s world.
Indigenous children speak out at Spanish conference
MADRID, 6 July 2005 – Eighty indigenous adolescents from 17 different Latin American countries have gathered together to attend the Ibero-American Meeting on Indigenous Children’s Rights. Anxious teenagers await their chance to be heard. As representatives of their respective indigenous populations, they carry the aspirations and fears of their people as a welcome burden, with a strength fuelled by centuries of discrimination and injustice - and a renewed hope for change. Sitting in the summer sun, they share their experiences, grievances, and expectations. The meeting is sponsored by UNICEF’s regional office for Latin America and the Caribbean, the Spanish Committee for UNICEF, and the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation.
UNICEF’s first-ever Voices of Youth ‘Make a Difference’ One-Minute Video Contest
NEW YORK, 28 June 2005 – Three college students from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia have won UNICEF’s first-ever Voices of Youth ‘Make a Difference’ One-Minute Video Contest for their one-minute public service announcement entitled ‘Youth of the World, Youth for the World’.
Youth Orchestra celebrates the world’s children
NEW YORK, 8 June 2005 – On Wednesday night, UNICEF and the Permanent Mission of Italy to the United Nations hosted the World Youth Orchestra in the United Nations’ General Assembly Hall. The group of 40 young musicians from 26 countries dedicated their concert to the children of the world.
Empowering adolescents to help their communities recover from crisis
NEW YORK, 26 May 2005 – Drawing on the experiences of teenagers who have helped their communities recover from crisis, UNICEF recently released a new publication: ‘Adolescent Programming in Conflict and Post Conflict Situations’.
Children gather online as The State of the World’s Children 2005 launches
New York, New York, 9 December 2004-Sixteen-year old Mustafa lives in the Gaza Strip, where political conflict affects his daily life. “When I have an exam I just think about the political topics and I forget the exam and I have problems in my exams,” he says.
Young people discuss the prevention of HIV and AIDS through UNICEF Voices of Youth online forum
NEW YORK, 23 November 2004 - Young people from around the world have come to UNICEF’s Voice of Youth online forum to talk about how children and young people can help stop the spread of HIV and AIDS.
Voices of Youth online discussion on disabilities – panellists from World Federation of the Deaf
NEW YORK, 20 October 2004 – Around the world there are millions of children and young people living with disabilities. This week on Voices of Youth (UNICEF’s global website for young people), a discussion thread is focusing on issues related to living with a disability. Participating are guest panellists Vivien Batory and Juan Angel De Gouveia, from the World Federation of the Deaf, Youth Section – an international non-governmental organization.
International Youth Day: Celebrating youth
On 12 August 2004, children and adults around the world will take a break from their daily routines to celebrate young people and the integral role they play in helping create a world fit for children.