The State of the World's Children 2000

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An urgent call to leadership

Alliances for children

To shift the way the international community assumes its responsibility towards children requires political will and an unwavering commitment on all levels to social action. It requires the rededication of those who have been working for children over long years and the building of new alliances. The momentous social movement that is needed for children is too important - and the urgency too great - for it to be led by a traditional few.

Copyright© 1999 UNICEF/98-0201/Lemoyne
More than 150,000 children and women were forced from their homes during the civil conflict in Yugoslavia. This woman stands with her children in a temporary settlement of displaced ethnic Albanian Kosovars.
 
Copyright© 1999 UNICEF/99-0109/Pirozzi
In Uganda, Umaru, 8, and Avisa, 10, who lost their father to AIDS and whose mother is sick with the disease, watch as Maxim Vengerov, internationally renowned violinist and UNICEF Envoy for Music, share a light-hearted moment outside their house.

The leadership called for in the next millennium extends beyond traditional sectors and governmental structures, to engage all those who share a concern for human progress - people's movements, community-based organizations, youth movements, women's groups, professional networks, artists and intellectuals, the mass media. It is a global leadership that will work bottom-up as well as top-down, involving Heads of State, leaders in the political, business, academic and religious communities and children and adolescents themselves who are already working towards positive change in their families and in their communities.

This expansive leadership, set to gather in 2001, will be the catalyst to the profound social transformations that are necessary to improve the world for children and women and to advance human development.

See also:

Panel 1, South Africa: Helping children by helping families

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