About us

UNICEF has been supporting the rights of children in Afghanistan since 1949.

A group of young male students are in a tent attending a class
UNICEF Afghanistan/2017/Froutan

UNICEF in Afghanistan

UNICEF works to promote and protect the rights and wellbeing of children and women in Afghanistan. Since 1949, we have been bringing basic services, including education, health, nutrition, protection, water, sanitation, and hygiene to those who are most in need, addressing inequities in each of these areas. UNICEF also provides humanitarian assistance during emergencies.

Together with our partners, we are on the front lines of the battle to eradicate polio in Afghanistan, one of only three countries in the world where the disease remains endemic.

In many ways, violence dominates the conversation about Afghanistan. The individual voices and faces of people, particularly women and children, are often lost in the noise. UNICEF is working to change this narrative so that every child may be given choices and opportunities in their life.

All children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfill their potential – to the benefit of a better world.

As one of the longest-serving members of the international community in Afghanistan, UNICEF has a unique role to promote peace and stability for the country’s children. We continue to support the country's transition from decades of war and natural disasters so that children, adolescents and women can access the services they need and fulfil their right to survival, development, protection and participation.

In line with our mandate, we apply a gender lens to all of our work and support the Afghanistan National Development Strategy. 

Partnerships: At the heart of our work

Partnerships are at the heart of everything UNICEF does. The power of partnerships allows us to expand our reach, working with a wide range of like-minded partners to deliver our mandate for children, in line with our Country Programme. 

National development partners

The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan leads our cooperation efforts and is UNICEF’s principal partner. We also collaborate with local government, community-based organizations, civil society, non-governmental organizations, United Nations agencies, and other international organizations operating in Afghanistan. Together, we strive to equip and empower children and their communities to develop the potential and resources of the country.

Norwegian Ambassador to Afghanista, Mari Skåre, and UNICEF Representative, Adele Khodr, sit at the back of a classroom full of girls in Herat, Afghanistan. (Nov 2016)
UNICEF Afghanistan/2016/Milner
Norwegian Ambassador to Afghanistan, Mari Skåre, and UNICEF Representative, Adele Khodr, sit at the back of a classroom full of girls in Herat, Afghanistan.

Our supporters

UNICEF in Afghanistan is supported by generous contributions from governments around the world, a network of UNICEF National Committees, and private foundations. 

Our major funding partners, listed alphabetically, include: Australia; Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Canada, Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF); Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF); Denmark; Finland; GAVI Fund; German Committee for UNICEF; Germany; IKEA Foundation; Italian Committee for UNICEF; Italy; Japan; Japan Committee for UNICEF; Norway; Republic of Korea; Rotary Foundation; Sweden; United Kingdom; United States; U.S. Fund for UNICEF - among others.