|© UNICEF video|
|The UNICEF Executive Board meets for the third and final day of its second regular session of 2009. From left: Deputy Executive Directors Hilde F. Johnson and Omar Abdi, Executive Director Ann M. Veneman, Executive Board President Oumar Daou, Executive Board Secretary Kirsi Madi, Deputy Executive Director Saad Houry and Associate Director of Programmes Jimmy Kolker.|
NEW YORK, USA – On 16 September, the final day of its second regular session of 2009, the UNICEF Executive Board adopted nine decisions related to UNICEF programme cooperation, evaluation, oversight and budget.
The day began with a report from the Chief of the HIV/AIDS Section and Associate Director of Programmes, Jimmy Kolker, who provided details about UNICEF’s follow-up to the recommendations of the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board (PCB).
Kolker also highlighted UNICEF’s collaboration with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which provides a quarter of all international financing for AIDS programmes. He detailed work undertaken with partners to develop gender-specific strategies to fight AIDS, and to review links between gender-based violence and HIV.
Strong support for fighting AIDS
“Looking at the different roles and power relationships between boys and girls and men and women is very much a part of the evidence that we’re gathering,” said Kolker.
“We have strong support from our national committees and donor governments,” he added, noting that the PCB budget from UNAIDS is used “to fill in gaps that donors may be less motivated to fill.”
The PCB is raising UNICEF’s 2010-11 share of the unified UNAIDS budget by 9 per cent, which will be allocated among prevention, treatment, care and support initiatives, Kolker reported.
Convention on the Rights of the Child
Later in the session’s final day, UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman updated the Executive Board on global preparations to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on 20 November 2009.
Veneman noted that the history of the CRC is one of commitment and collaboration. As such, she remarked, it was fitting to see plans for the wide range of substantive events being staged around the world, with and by Member States, to underline the global impact of the CRC and the challenges that remain.
On 19 November, UNICEF will launch a special edition of its flagship publication, ‘The State of the World's Children’, commemorating the anniversary and the timeless relevance of the Convention.
On 20 November, UNICEF will host an event in New York to honour the collective efforts of Member States, civil society, children and other partners. The many commemorations in different parts of the world will underscore the need for a strong commitment to translate the articles of the CRC into results for children.
Ongoing support for UNICEF
At the close of the session, the Executive Director thanked the delegates, noting the importance of UNICEF maintaining a steady and responsible course during the present global economic downturn. She said the organization would aim to stay that course through efficiency gains realized from improved business practices – and through the work of its National Committees, which have redoubled their efforts to mobilize resources for children.
Veneman further highlighted UNICEF’s strong commitment to UN coherence and working together with other agencies, using the organization’s convening power to leverage resources and results for children.
The President of the 2009 Executive Board, Ambassador Oumar Daou, adjourned the meeting with a statement emphasizing the need for sustained efforts to support vulnerable children and women at a critical time.
“I am glad that during this session, important decisions were adopted and their implementation will undoubtedly contribute to building a world fit for children,” he said.
CRC @ 20