UNICEF celebrates its 10th anniversary in Russia
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) recently celebrated 10 years of activities in Russia. At the September 17th press conference at “RIA Novosti”, UNICEF presented its newest child welfare reports and announced Oxana Fedorova, “Miss Universe 2002,” as a new UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. She signed a contract with UNICEF for one RF rouble.
MOSCOW, Russian Federation, 18 September 2007 - During its 10 years in Russia, UNICEF worked in 40 regions of the country. UNICEF has achieved impressive results in the following programme areas:
In addition to these four programme areas, UNICEF strives to integrate children’s and young people’s voices. A critical milestone in Russia, where children’s voices were placed on the political agenda, was at the history-making Junior 8 meeting in St. Petersburg in June 2006. UNICEF collaborated with the Russian Federation Ministry of Education and Science to enable eight children from the Junior 8 meeting to participate in a substantive discussion with the G8 leaders on matters which affected the children’s lives.
Approximately 1,300,000,000 Russian roubles has been invested into children’s programmes during UNICEF’s work in Russia. About 80% of all donations to UNICEF worldwide are from individuals. While the share of donations from individuals in Russia is not yet as large, UNICEF over the last two years has received more than 13.000.000 roubles for social programmes from Russian citizens. UNICEF has established partnerships with state and private institutions in many Russian regions. For instance, this year UNICEF signed a partnership agreement with the Moscow Government. UNICEF’s initiatives have been supported by many well-known political and public figures.
Support from corporate partners is also growing, having existing partnerships with IKEA, Amway, KMB-bank, Rosbank, Hotel “Sheraton”, Stora Enso, Unilever, Nokia, Avon, and the Drugstore Chain “36,6”.
Carel de Rooy, UNICEF Representative in the Russian Federation and Belarus said: “We don’t only provide direct support to children, we speak up for those who have no voice. In cooperation with the Russian Government, we work in the field of child welfare reform. Often existing systems and policies are designed 'with the best of intentions,' but this is not always the same as working 'in the best interests of the child'. To ensure the best interests of the child, we need to listen to children and to look from a child's prospective."
Carel de Rooy presented the latest UNICEF reports:
The publications are available at UNICEF Russia official web-site: www.unicef.ru
Finally, Carel de Rooy mentioned three key paradigms shifts required in Russia:
The highlight of the press conference was the announcement of the new UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador: T.V. star and “Miss Universe 2002”, Oxana Fedorova. Ms. Fedorova has already participated in many UNICEF activities. She signed a contract with UNICEF for a symbolic amount of one RF rouble.
Oxana Fedorova noted that “participation in UNICEF’s work is not only a way to help children, but also an opportunity for fulfilling one’s social responsibility In a strong state and moral society, such as Russia, we shouldn’t say that children’s issues are “someone else’s problems,” or our children “somebody else’s children.”
The event was attended by the famous paediatrician and surgeon, Russian Professor Leonid Roshal; Moscow Child Rights Ombudsperson Aleksey Golovan, Russian J8 participants, Tatyana Ushakova and Anton Yurko; young people, who participated in UNICEF’s Peace and Tolerance 2007 Summer Camps in the North Caucasus; and representatives from the Federal Ministries, the Moscow Government and UN agencies.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors