UNICEF in the region
To fight child mortality and child malnutrition, UNICEF is promoting a minimum package of proven health and nutrition interventions that includes, amongst others, childhood immunization, vitamin A supplementation, distribution and promotion of insecticide treated bed-nets, promotion of exclusive breastfeeding and complementary feeding and oral re-hydration. Through these interventions child mortality can be reduced by up to 25%. UNICEF is increasing its efforts to fight the impact on the HIV/AIDS pandemic on children through the prevention of transmission of mother to child transmission of HIV, pediatric treatment, prevention of new infections among young people and support for orphans and other vulnerable children.
Throughout the region, UNICEF is also working on promoting access to education, particularly for girls. Through initiatives focused on the quality of education, UNICEF contributes to increased retention and completion of the schooling cycle. Throughout West & Central Africa, UNICEF promotes a protective environment for children through a range of activities and programs. UNICEF supports data collection, prevention through community based activities and the reinforcement of legal systems.
The situation of children in West & Central Africa is still very difficult, but through strong political leadership in the region and with the support of donors, UNICEF is confident that it can help make a difference for children and for their communities.