UNICEF in Georgia celebrates 60 years for children
UNICEF in Georgia reviews the situation of Georgian children
TBILISI, 11 December 2006. Georgia now meets the core international criteria for iodine deficiency elimination; Child injury rates at home are high (11%). At least 1 out of 10 surveyed ob/gynecologists have inadequate experience in emergency obstetrics; Children transferred from institution to normal school often become subjects of hostile attitude, humiliation and violence from their classmates and sometimes from teachers as well – these are the main findings of the surveys that have been conducted by UNICEF in Georgia to assess how Georgia is progressing towards meeting the Millennium development Goals.
“Today UNICEF celebrates its many achievements on behalf of children all over the world” says Giovanna Barberis, UNICEF Representative in Georgia at the conference in Tbilisi dedicated to the UNICEF 60th anniversary, “At this important day we are thinking of the most vulnerable children in Georgia and would like once again to highlight those issues that need our attention. We have to think how we can unite our efforts to tackle these problems and to help Georgia to achieve MDGs.”
The conference is attended by the First Lady of Georgia, government officials, NGOs, donors and UN agency representatives. UNICEF 60th anniversary in Georgia will be used to draw again public attention to the most disadvantage children and to review those issues that need urgent attention and combined efforts from different partners.
Other events in Georgia include launch of the TV spot dedicated to the 60th anniversary featuring UN Goodwill Ambassador in Georgia Paata Burchuladze; broadcasting of the 7 min video on UNICEF 60th anniversary on the nation-wide channel; production of the booklets and calendars dedicated to the 60th anniversary; releasing relevant articles in the newspapers; Special Christmas performance for children staged by the Tbilisi’s ancient Marjanishvili Academic Theatre.
Highlights of the 60th anniversary celebration worldwide include a commemorative meeting at the UN General Assembly, the screening of a new UNICEF documentary, “Wake Up World,” a photo exhibit and multi-media art show entitled, “Mosaic UNICEF,” and, of course, a celebration with children.
Born from the ashes of World War II, UNICEF’s first mission was to provide milk, food, blankets and medicine to millions of European children left hungry, homeless and weakened by war. Serving more than six million meals a day, it quickly earned the nickname, “milkman to the world’s children.”
Once the children of Europe were on their way to recovery, UNICEF broadened its mandate beyond European borders to help children suffering from poverty and illness throughout the world. Ever since then UNICEF has been on an evolutionary journey, adapting to meet the needs of children in an ever changing world.
UNICEF’s advocacy and programming efforts have literally saved the lives of millions of children. UNICEF lists among its achievements:
Perhaps UNICEF’s greatest achievement has been putting children at the center of the international development agenda. No longer a separate cause with separate concerns, children are an important part of global strategies to reduce illness, poverty and mortality while boosting education, gender equality and environmental sustainability. In short, they are at the very heart of the Millennium Development Goals. In the coming years UNICEF will continue to push for the needs of children, centering its efforts on reaching MDG targets by 2015.
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