Immunization campaign in Nigeria mobilizes a nation for child survival, village by village
KANO STATE, Nigeria, 6 November 2013 – The man with the megaphone calls for mothers and fathers to bring their children for vaccinations. The message is a tinny monotone, repetitive, not unlike a call to prayer.
In Ethiopian villages, improving water and nutrition lays groundwork for a better future
MACHAKEL DISTRICT, Ethiopia, 1 November 2013 – At 10 a.m. in the small village of Amari Yewabesh in Ethiopia’s Amhara region, Wubalem Asmamaw quietly greets her neighbours before putting down her clay pot in front of a water tap. The 17-year old student opens the spigot and fills the pot. She then walks back to her family’s home.
UNICEF Executive Director meets with displaced families during immunization campaign in the Syrian Arab Republic
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 29 October 2013 – During a two-day visit to the Syrian Arab Republic, UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake has praised the efforts of national partners, community and local organizations and volunteers in the provision of humanitarian assistance for the most at-risk Syrian children and women.
Innovative approaches improve maternal and child health care in Madhya Pradesh, India
MADHYA PRADESH, India, 29 October 2013 – Roopwati is on her way home. Twenty-four hours ago, she was in the same ambulance, on her way to give birth in a clinic, under medical supervision.
Health volunteers help mothers and their newborn babies in Kawergosk refugee camp, Iraq
ERBIL, Iraq, 18 October 2013 – Berevan Yusaf Tamo, a Syrian refugee, is far from home. About a month ago, she crossed the Iraqi border, heavily pregnant.
Super child health agents are helping Brazil reduce preventable child deaths
FORTALEZA, Brazil, 16 October 2013 – “Hey, Miguel!” says Nicole, as she sits down beside him at a plastic table. “Do you know why vaccinations are important?” Miguel’s transfixed by Nicole’s affectionate smile, but, to be honest, he’s only 4 years old and is not quite sure what the answer is. No problem! Nicole has the answer, and she knows how to explain it to Miguel. Just 9 years old, Nicole is already a trained Super Child Health Agent. “Vaccinations help to keep children like us healthy,” she says to Miguel, holding his hands. “Vaccinations make sure that we don’t get any bad diseases.”
Nourishing the children of M'bera refugee camp, Mauritania
M’BERA REFUGEE CAMP, Mauritania, 8 October 2013 – It’s difficult to work in the extreme daytime heat of M’bera refugee camp, so mothers bring their children to the centre for the treatment of malnourished children early in the morning.
Mix of old and new helps cut child deaths in Uganda
BUKUMANSIMBI, Uganda, 16 September 2013 – In Butenga health centre, 4-day-old Brian has become one of Uganda’s newest citizens. Five other babies were born here this week – that’s five times as many as just a couple of years ago.
In Brazil, social mothers support mother - and baby
SOBRAL, Brazil, 13 September 2013 – Being armed with just a broom may not seem like the best way to reduce child mortality, but an innovative programme – Mãe Social – is proving how effective this simple approach can be.
In Central African Republic, going door to door to beat malnutrition
BAMBARI, Central African Republic, 5 September 2013 - Dieu-Donné Pamad sits on a thin hospital bed watching his baby sister laugh and play with their mother. Despite being more than a year older at 19 months, the boy is barely bigger than his 4-month-old sister.
In Haiti, emergency clinics help reduce maternal and neonatal deaths
MARIGOT, Haiti, 25 July 2013 – Madette Perrique let out a heart-rending wail. She was in labour, and in pain. Only a few minutes after we had arrived at the clinic in Marigot, she was rushed into the delivery room by a crew of nurses in blue. Moments later, we heard a baby cry.
Reducing the prevalence of birth defects in Georgia
TBILISI, Georgia, 28 June 2013 – Maka Vashakidze has two daughters. The toddler smiles shyly as she greets the group of visitors.
Determined to protect every child in Pakistan from measles
QUETTA, Pakistan, 2 May 2013 – Kausar Parveen prepares an injection. Her resolve to vaccinate every child within her reach has kept her going with the same vigour for quarter of a century.
In Ghana, community mobilizes against malnutrition
GBULLUNG, Ghana, 1 May 2013 - When Hamdan’s face and body swelled up, his mother Ramatu did not know what was wrong with him. In this part of northern Ghana, many parents believe that symptoms of illness in their children signify a curse from the gods or punishment from ancestors. Children are taken to traditional healers for spiritual intervention, rather than for medical care.
Severely malnourished children in Haiti thrive, with simple, affordable remedies
JEREMIE, Haiti, 24 April 2013 – Through the leafy beanstalks, Derilus Firdemont watches her 4-year-old daughter Sendy play with friends in the garden.
Mozambique rolls out new pneumococcal vaccine
MAPUTO, Mozambique, 22 April 2013 – The dirt road that leads to the Malhangalene Medical Centre in Maputo has turned to mud. Hard rain has been pelting the capital city throughout the day, making everyone wish the rainy season were over.
Local factory provides home-grown response to malnutrition in the Niger
NIAMEY, Niger, 17 April 2013 – A few hundred metres from the banks of the mighty Niger River, where the routines of fishers and farmers continue as they have for centuries, a modest factory is transforming how this West African nation responds to the threat of malnutrition.
UNICEF report reveals shocking cost of malnutrition and outlines unprecedented chance to defeat it
NEW YORK, United States of America, 15 April 2013 – A new UNICEF report reveals the shocking prevalence of stunting in children under the age of 5.
New health centres and community outreach tackle Chad's nutrition crisis
MONGO, Chad, 11 April 2013 – The father wipes his eyes with the sleeve of his white boubou.“We did all we could,” says Dr. Kaimbo. “Unfortunately, the boy was too weak.”
In Mali, information about breastfeeding is saving children's lives
SIKASSO, Mali, 8 April 2013 – Exclusive breastfeeding saves lives. Aminata Coulibaly, from the village of Kesso, Sikasso region, has seen its impact first-hand.
A cash transfer programme helps a village in the Niger back on its feet
TAJAE NOMADE, Tahoua Region, Niger, 5 April 2013 – Hamatou Oumarou stands in line holding her 13-month-old daughter Safia.
In Angola, sharing the recipe for happiness to end preventable child deaths
LUANDA, Angola, 1 April 2013 – Early in the morning, Maria Isabel walks along the streets of the Cantinto neighbourhood of Kilamba Kiaxi municipality, Luanda province, knocking on doors to talk to the locals about A Receita de Felicidade (Recipe for Happiness).
In a relatively quiet region of Mali, programme targets malaria deaths
OUÉLESSÉBOUGOU, Mali, 27 March 2013 – Continuing conflict in the northern part of Mali has had tremendous impact on the country. Mali has also been facing food and nutrition crisis aggravated by the political instability and conflict in the north. Schools have been closed, health centres looted and vandalized, children’s rights violated.
Grassroots programme targets stunting in rural Indonesia
NUSA TENGGARA BARAT PROVINCE, Indonesia, 20 March 2013 – A grassroots programme in Indonesia is making inroads into one of the world’s silent crises – stunting.
Community-based approach addresses acute malnutrition in Somalia
BURAO, Somalia, 12 February 2013 – The first year of Ubah Ismail’s life was difficult. At 5 months, she had pneumonia, followed by a severe intestinal upset that left her with diarrhoea for much of her sixth month.
New health centres help India battle high infant mortality rates
MADHYA PRADESH, India, 4 February 2013 – A baby takes sharp, rapid breaths at the Special Newborn Care Unit in the Shivpuri District Hospital. Born weak and premature, at 705 grams she weighs less than half of what she should.
African Leadership for Child Survival meeting in Ethiopia charts map for reducing child deaths
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, 28 January 2013 – High rates of preventable child disease and death persist, despite the existence of simple, inexpensive high-impact interventions in newborn, child and maternal health.
Investment in children - the best buy in global health
NEW YORK, United States of America, 22 January 2013 – As global leaders and business titans gather in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum to discuss the economic outlook of the world, UNICEF is looking at the economic advantages of low-cost commodities and innovations that could save the lives of millions of children and women.
Your invitation to the virtual baby shower for UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Shakira and her partner, FC Barcelona star Gerard Piqué
NEW YORK, United States of America, 16 January 2013 – Shakira, the world-famous singer/songwriter and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, has long been a passionate advocate for children and children’s issues. This month marks an especially joyous occasion for the 35-year-old Colombian singer and her partner FC Barcelona star Gerard Piqué: the imminent arrival of their own first child.
Three years after the devastating earthquake, a survey sheds light on the current status of children and women in Haiti
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, 14 January 2013 – For the first time since 2005–2006, Haiti has updated data on the situation of children and women, enabling analysis of the earthquake response and helping establish where and who the most vulnerable children are.
In Chad, anatomy of a vaccination campaign
WEST MONGO, Chad, 10 Jan 2013 - Four of Toma Mamout’s seven children died young, one from polio. Her loss became Ms. Mamout’s calling – working to encourage mothers in Chad to vaccinate their children.
Attacking chronic malnutrition in the poorest rural areas of Nepal
KHATI GAUN and BIRALTOLI, Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, 9 January 2013 - Deep in the foothills of the Himalayan mountains, Pashupati Saud is up early, harvesting herbs and vegetables from her small garden. She cooks them into a sauce and gives them to her 8-year-old son, along with a bowl of rice soaked in buffalo milk.
NBA stars fight polio in northern Kenya
NORTHERN KENYA, 2 January 2013 – A group of professional basketball players from the United States National Basketball Association visited Kenya and learned first-hand about eradicating polio.
In Jordan, a campaign to vaccinate against polio and measles reaches 132,000 children
AMMAN, Jordan, 2 January 2013 – According to the Ministry of Health, more than 132,000 children have been vaccinated against measles and polio in northern Jordan as part of a joint UNICEF and Ministry of Health vaccination campaign.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and football star Leo Messi campaigns for an end to preventable child deaths
NEW YORK, United States of America, 14 December 2012 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and football star Leo Messi makes an urgent plea to strengthen efforts in child survival to save the lives of thousands of children dying every year from preventable causes.
In occupied Palestinian territory, new lives blossom in the aftermath of violence
GAZA CITY, occupied Palestinian territory, 11 December 2012 – A girl in school uniform searches for belongings among pieces of furniture hurled against the walls by a blast. She picks up a dress through the rubble and gives it to her stepfather, Mohammed, who hangs it on a window frame. The window has blown out.
As nutrition crisis starts to release its grip on Mauritania, a mother seeks care for her unresponsive baby
TINIZAH, Kaedi Region, Mauritania, 12 December 2012 - Humming softly, Fatimatou cradles her healthy, smiling 9-month-old boy Sidiahmed in her lap. It’s been a long time since she could relax and play with him.
UNICEF leads Child Health Days to stem the tide of preventable childhood diseases across Somalia
BOSSASO, Somalia, 10 December 2012 – The journey to defeat the diseases that kill thousands of children every year in Somalia starts in the chilly light of dawn.
Field Diary: Parents in the Syrian Arab Republic brave fighting to get their children vaccinated
HOMS, Syrian Arab Republic, 6 December 2012 - At the vaccination clinics I visited, the sounds of children crying after their injections mixed with the explosions of gunshots and shelling in the streets outside.
UNICEF and the European Union take action to tackle undernutrition in Asia and Africa
BRUSSELS, Belgium, 6 December 2012 – The European Union (EU) and UNICEF have joined forces to protect more than 30 million children’s lives by improving nutrition security in five Asian and four African countries.
As leaders gather to discuss vaccines at the GAVI Forum, the United Republic of Tanzania introduces new vaccines for pneumonia and diarrhoea
MOROGORO, United Republic of Tanzania, 6 December 2012 – As the mercury crept up to the upper range of the 30s (C) and the humidity approached 100 per cent, Upendo Philip, 24, and her 1-month-old baby Ustant crammed onto a motorbike with a driver, a cousin and her baby. They made their way to the Melela Health Facility 25 km away from their tiny village of Meleo, in Morogoro Region, 200 km south of the nation’s capital.
In India, pilot programme builds skills to save mothers and newborns
PATNA, India, 20 November 2012 - “Insert it slowly, from the nose, down to the stomach. Be careful, or you may enter the lungs. Gudda is just a day old,” the doctor calls out.
Months after famine conditions have ended, health centres across southern Somalia help children suffering from malnutrition
MOGADISHU, Somalia, 13 November 2012 – Ten-month-old Ifrah Mohamed Abdi was born as the first famine declared in more than 20 years in Africa held its grip on the village in which her family has lived for generations.
At Za'atari refugee camp in Jordan, UNICEF supports Syrian refugee families
AMMAN, Jordan, 7 November 2012 - As the canvas roof of her family’s tent flaps in the wind, Fatma* holds her son close, gently brushing dust from his face.
In Malawi, compulsory universal birth registration protects children from abuses and opens access to social services
LILONGWE, Malawi, 10 October 2012 - Newborn Joshou Nandola is bundled warmly in a big woolly blanket. Joshou’s name is written on his birth report. Joshou will know his birthday.
In Cambodia, a push to bring healthcare to remote areas
PHNOM PENH, Cambodia, 4 October 2012 - Baby Moeun has just come into the world. Though he doesn’t know it, he has a difficult journey ahead of him.
In remote regions of Bangladesh, community health workers break barriers to healthcare
SUNAMGANJ, Bangladesh, 3 October 2012 – Rita Rani Boidda walks for miles every day in Sunamganj district, in one of the most remote regions of Bangladesh. She goes from door to door, navigating narrow lanes under the scorching sun, in the pouring rain, sometimes along a flooded terrain.
In the Republic of Korea, parliamentarians reaffirm their commitment to reducing preventable child deaths
SEOUL, Republic of Korea, 1 October 2012 - This fifth birthday party was not a typical one, here at the Korean National Assembly building. Nearly 100 dignitaries and university students gathered to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Korean Parliamentarian Friends of UNICEF (KPFU).
United Nations Commission lays out plan to improve access to life-saving health supplies for women and children
NEW YORK, United States of America, 26 September 2012 - Members of the United Nations Commission on Life-Saving Commodities for Women and Children today submitted a new plan and set of recommendations seeking to increase the supply of, and access to, life-saving and affordable medicines and health supplies for the world’s most vulnerable women and children.
Social Good Summit panel debates the Web, social media, apps and handsets in service of A Promise Renewed
NEW YORK, United States of America, 25 September 2012 - UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake asks you to imagine a football stadium. But he asks you to think about it in terms of child mortality.
Meeting notes progress on reducing maternal and child mortality
NEW YORK, 24 September 2012 - UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake hosted a high-level Health 4+ meeting on women’s and children’s health at UNICEF’s New York headquarters today.
In Cambodia, village health volunteers provide critical help for pregnant women and newborns
KAMPONG THOM, Cambodia, 24 September 2012 – Eighteen-year-old Srey Neang is eight months pregnant with her first child. Because there are few employment opportunities in her village, Ms. Neang and her husband work in a neighbouring village in Kampong Thom. A labourer in a rice field, Ms. Neang has had little access to health services and information.
Issue of The Lancet on child and maternal health highlights equity and accountability
LONDON, United Kingdom, 20 September 2012 - A week after UNICEF and partners released data showing that rapid progress has been made in reducing the number of children dying before the age of 5, and with the 2015 deadline to achieve the Millennium Development Goals fast approaching, the call is louder than ever to reach the estimated 19,000 children who still die every day from mostly preventable causes.
In facing nutrition crisis, the Niger benefits from lessons learned
MADAROUNFA, Maradi region, Niger, 10 September 2012 - Ouma Abdul sits on a cot at the Madarounfa Pediatric Intensive Feeding Centre comforting her underweight 18-month-old daughter Nafiza. Despite the promise of a good harvest, hospitals and health centres across the country are filled to capacity with young children suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM).
Outreach programme in Malawi brings healthcare closer to communities
CHIKHWAWA, Malawi, 13 September 2012 - Simplicious Gift, 5 months old, has a cough, fever and diarrhoea. Ruth Bwanakaya discusses his illness with his mother Margaret, and meticulously notes down details about the child in the health register – his name, age, village and symptoms. As a matter of routine, she checks the child for signs of malnutrition and proceeds to prescribe anti-malaria medication, paracetamol, oral rehydration salts, and zinc for the diarrhoea.
Amidst poverty and food crisis, number of child deaths in the Niger plummets
AGUIE, Maradi Region, Niger, 17 September 2012 - Tiny Bassariya Aweso lies in a hospital cot whimpering softly as her mother gently strokes her back, trying to offer some comfort. The 1-year-old girl has been recovering from the effects of severe acute malnutrition at the Intensive Therapeutic Feeding Centre of Aguie District Hospital for more than three weeks.
UNICEF report points to rapid progress made in reducing child deaths worldwide
NEW YORK, 13 September 2012 – Across the world, the number of deaths among children under 5 has been on a continuous decline for over two decades, says the 2012 Progress Report on Committing to Child Survival: A Promise Renewed [pdf], released today by UNICEF.