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The stories section tells the stories of children in Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States whose lives have been touched by UNICEF.


Training of Turkey’s justice professionals will end tragedies, says judge
Izmir, TURKEY, 31 July 2013 - A sad sad story from years ago, and the troubled recollection of a judge, thrust UNICEF’s Justice for Children programme to the top of the national agenda one hot weekend in July.

It takes a special family to care for special children
TBILISI, May 2013 - Many mothers of Down Syndrome children feel they have their hands full with one child. Irma Sanikidze has five such children, all under the age of five.

Celebrating diversity in a renovated school in Southern Kyrgyzstan
Tajik-Abad, KYRGYZSTAN, 21 May 2013 - A seven-language chorus of greetings and a spectacular show were performed today by children in a rich variety of national costumes in a small school surrounded by silent endless cotton fields in Tajik-Abad.

Helping all children in Armenia prepare for disasters
GYUMRI, Armenia, 23 February 2013 — Margarita Sargsyan and her classmates at School #1 in Gyumri, the second biggest city of Armenia, are taking part in school lessons which can save their lives: learning about disaster risk reduction.

Transforming the lives of children with disabilities through inclusive education
NEW YORK/GENEVA 8 February 2013 - Armenia, Montenegro and Serbia recently demonstrated their progress and challenges at a briefing on the sidelines of UNICEF's Executive Board meeting.

More children with disabilities in Armenia are able to fully enjoy their neighbourhood schools
YEREVAN, 5 February 2013 - A decade ago one could hardly imagine seeing a child bound to a wheel-chair in a regular school in Armenia. Rather, most Armenians believe that a child like Siranoush should attend a special school or even worse stay at home.

Young people empowered to bring change in Azerbaijan
BAKU, 18 December 2012 - Young people represent a great opportunity for the development of Azerbaijan.

Young Uzbek journalists discuss the importance of the family for growth, well-being and protection of children
TASHKENT, 14 November 2012 - UNICEF inspired a thought-provoking discussion among young Uzbek journalists about the importance of family for the growth, well-being and protection of children, especially the youngest.

Extended daycare program at school for children from poor families in Prutače
BRČKO, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 14 November 2012 - Children from poor families living in Prutače settlement near Brčko, have recently been able to take part in an extended daycare program.

In Tajikistan, diphtheria vaccination reaches every child
DUSHANBE, Tajikistan, 12 October 2012 – On an autumn afternoon in one of the most remote valleys nestled high up in the peaks of north Tajikistan, children rode on donkeys to help their families bring grass and wood for the winter.

Ensuring girls' voices matter in disaster risk reduction through education in Kazakhstan
13 October 2012 - Today is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction. This year, girls and women showed the world what they are doing to reduce risks and advocate for community resilience.

Young people bring positive change to a post-conflict area of Kyrgyzstan
KADU, Kyrgyzstan, 9 October 2012 - Erkin Japashev says he spent most of his early teenage years engaging in mindless village bouts.

Juvenile justice through the eyes of the children
GENEVA/BISHEK, 21 September 2012 - Children's voices took center stage today in an international conference, "Violence against children in juvenile justice systems" in the Central Asian Republic of Kyrgyzstan.

UNICEF helps young women of Zaporizhzhya
ZAPORIZHZHYA, Ukraine, 15-16 August 2012 – UNICEF launches a new project aiming to develop an innovate integrated model of HIV prevention, to provide care and support for the most at risk young females in Zaporizhzhya.

Rugby as a Means of Promoting Social Reintegration for Youngsters in Conflict with the Law
TBILISI, Georgia, 26 July 2012 - Lasha is telling us a story with words that up until only recently he never thought he would hear himself saying or, moreover, believing. “I had no hope. I thought no one would want me,” he says.

New programmes improve care and support for children living with disabilities in Georgia
TBILISI, Georgia, 24 July 2012 – Two-year-old Ioane Gelashvili is like any boy his age – full of energy, laughter and affection. He also happens to have Down's syndrome, a condition that, until recently, would have ensured his isolation and stigmatization

A quiet revolution: pre-school education in Georgia
KUTAISI, Georgia, 16 July 2012 – Kindergarten No. 17 in Kutaisi, Georgia's second-largest city, seems at first glance like a typical Soviet-era establishment: large, imposing and utilitarian, surrounded by run-down apartment blocks.

Off to a good start: pre-school education in rural Georgia
KHASHURI, Georgia, May 2012 - The kindergarten in Tezeri village, in the central Khashuri district of Georgia, may seem much like any other kindergarten almost anywhere in the world.

OneMinutesJr - Teenagers share visual stories on juvenile justice in Tajikistan
DUSHANBE, Tajikistan, 30 June 2012 - A group of boys from different regions of the Central Asian Republic of Tajikistan participated in a OneMinutesJr video workshop in the capital Dushanbe this week.

Living in the streets of Odessa, dreaming of becoming a famous footballer
Ukraine, July 2012 - Anton will soon turn 12. He was born in Russia, but after his father died, his mother found a new husband, who according to Anton used to beat him up and treat him badly.

A true meaning in life: Success with football
Alina Zelutina, 19, believes that her long-lasting love for football brings not only satisfaction and joy to her life but also offers her a chance to interact with other young people. She says it gives true meaning to her life.

Angels Never Sleep
MINSK, Belarus, June 1, 2012 - United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and Vladimir Pougatch, frontman of J:Mors band, present a documentary, Angels Never Sleep, produced with the support of the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus.

“Football gives me a different life”
Ukraine, June 2012 - Fifteen-year-old Masha has seven siblings and together with her youngest brother, always suffered from their father’s difficult temper.

PC game gives boost to campaign against prejudice: Adventure “Searching for the Treasure of Bosnia and Herzegovina"
SARAJEVO, BiH, 30 April 2012 - The first Bosnian adventure PC game “Searching for the treasure of Bosnia and Herzegovina” promotes the cultural and historical heritage of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), but also helps young people to understand diversities.

Yelena Isinbaeva: “Let’s place Every Child on the Pedestal”
MOSCOW, Russian Federation, 9 April 2012 - World champion, one of the greatest athletes in the world Yelena Isinbaeva speaking from Monaco, where she trains for the Olympics-2012 has stated that she supports UNICEF activities in the Russian Federation.

Teenagers produce short films about poverty and social inclusion at OneMinutesJr workshop in Kolašin
KOLAŠIN, MONTENEGRO, 30 March 2012 - For five days, twenty teenagers from the north of the country turned Kolašin into the Hollywood of Montenegro and produced their own short videos on topics such as poverty and social inclusion.

Helping children through conflict-sensitive reporting
OSH, Kyrgyzstan, 14 February 2012 - Journalism feeds on conflict. News stories about conflicts often attract the biggest audiences, especially on television. Paradoxically, journalists are taught surprisingly little in journalism schools about conflict.

New daycare centre gives hope to children with disabilities
TASHBULAK, Kyrgyzstan, 8 February 2012 - The Ariet daycare centre for children with disabilities was officially opened today in the small village of Tashbulak in Jalalabad Province of Kyrgyzstan.

In Uzbekistan, child-friendly preschools are engaging children and improving education
BUKHARA, Uzbekistan, 2 February 2012 – In Bukhara, southern Uzbekistan, music and laughter drifted across Preschool Number 11.

Children show hopeful signs of a stronger peace in Southern Kyrgyzstan
OSH/GENEVA, 30 January, 2012 – In Amir Timur, the district capital on the east side of Osh, children are singing at a school festival, a hopeful sign of deepening friendship, mutual understanding and accord between people of different ethnicities.

Construction of proper latrines contributes to cultural change in Kyrgyzstan
OSH/GENEVA, 30 January 2012 – Sanitation remains a cultural taboo in Kyrgyzstan, where it is seen as disgusting and shameful. But after hundreds of homes burned down during violence amid civil unrest in June 2010, the issue has come to the fore.

A new chance for a happy childhood
BELGRADE/VALJEVO, December 2011 - Andjela was diagnosed with Down syndrome when she was born five years ago. Her mother abandoned her while she was still in the maternity ward.

A day care centre in Uzbekistan helps children living with HIV break their isolation
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, 30 November 2011 - The room was filled with toys, books, pictures. Indeed, everything that could possibly stimulate a child was provided and the youngsters in the noisy play session were certainly responding.

Participatory TV programming with and for children
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, October 2011 - Local television producers of children’s programming spent four days in late September examining how they do their jobs by looking through the eyes of children.

Educating children on disaster risks in Georgia
MLETA, Georgia, 13 October 2011 — Today is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction. This year children and young people are encouraged to step up and take part. Check out this story from Georgia on disaster preparedness.

Kazakhstan: Working together before disasters strike
ALMATY, Kazakhstan, 13 October 2011 - Today is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reducation. This year children and young people are encouraged to step up and take part. Check out this story on disaster preparedness in Kazakhstan.

Helping Kyrgyz children build their resilience to disasters
CHENGEN, Kyrgyzstan, 13 October 2011 —Today is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reducation. This year children and young people are encouraged to step up and take part. Check out this story on disaster preparedness in Kyrgyzstan.

Supporting Disaster Risk Reduction training for children in Uzbekistan
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan, 13 October 2011 - Today is the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction. This year, children and young people are encouraged to step up and take part. Check out this story on disaster preparedness in Uzbekistan.

In Azerbaijan, members of the Berliner Philharmoniker advocate for the rights of children with disabilities
BAKU, Azerbaijan, 22 September 2011 - On their first ever field trip, four musicians from the Berliner Philharmoniker, a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, have visited Azerbaijan to contribute to changing the lives of children with disabilities.

“Our world of Diversity”: Stories on inclusive education
SARAJEVO, BiH, 16 September 2011 - Children together with their parents and teachers from several cities of Bosnia and Herzegovina participated in book launching event in Sarajevo today.

One year after the conflict in Kyrgyzstan, hundreds of students return to newly built schools, but thousands of others still wait
OSH PROVINCE, Kyrgyzstan, 1 September 2011 – Hundreds of children from Shark village have settled down in a new school after a year long journey.

Young reporters bring own perspective at UNICEF/IPU conference
YEREVAN, Armenia/GENEVA, 1 July 2011 – Young reporters in the Armenian capital Yerevan took over the cameras and the microphones at a recent international conference on child rights organised by UNICEF and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU).

UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake visits youth centres rebuilding lives in Kyrgyzstan
OSH, Kyrgyzstan, 29 June 2011 – In spite of the heat, the smiles on the faces of the children performing their dance of welcome were genuine. They betrayed no hint of the psychological scars they may still be suffering.

Promoting child rights with teachers of North Ossetia - Alania
22 June 2011 - Education workers and future teachers from the Republic of North Ossetia-Alania learn to use the child rights teaching manual developed through the joint efforts of UNICEF and the Dagestan State Pedagogical University.

Day Centre is home of happiness and hope for Gardabani youngsters
GARDABANI, Georgia, April 2011 - Each child here is living with an intellectual disability. Significantly, each youngster is also living with a smile on his or her face as they play in their newly built playground at the Gardabani day centre.

Good parent-paediatrician communication - a key to success
FOCA, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 31 May 2011 - A series of roundtables supported by UNICEF is being held in the cities of BiH.

The friendship train tours Turkey
TURKEY, 10 May 2011 - 33 children – all members of Turkey’s provincial child rights committees – undertook a train journey of almost 2,000 kilometres in April as part of a UN joint programme targeting the development of Eastern Anatolia through culture.






Click on the year to read stories describing the real lives of boys and girls, men and women and the challenges faced by the most vulnerable in the region.


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