We’re building a new UNICEF.org.
As we swap out old for new, pages will be in transition. Thanks for your patience – please keep coming back to see the improvements.

Communicating with children

Address the needs of all

Principle 4 - Communication for children should address the needs of all, including those who are most disadvantaged

Media reflects who and what is valued by society. This is true in presentations of people and of culture and traditions. It is critical that communication allows all children to hear and see themselves reflected positively, as opposed to communication that focuses on marginalization, shame, or negative or patronizing portrayals. Good communication includes positive portrayals of children from different cultures and ethnic groups and all socio-economic backgrounds, those with disabilities, and children who have or are experiencing trauma, grief or living through emergencies.

Creative solutions and competencies should come from marginalized groups themselves, not just from those in positions of authority or from privileged backgrounds. Conscious decisions should be made to include the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children as a regular part of all types and forms of communication. Whether it is a PSA about hand washing, a documentary about HIV/AIDS prevention, a puppet show about resisting bullies, a board game teaching life skills, or a live action drama about emergency preparedness, boundaries need to be pushed to ensure that the needs and abilities of all are portrayed.

Guidelines for principle 4


4A - Reflect the dignity of each child and every adult
4B - Be inclusive: celebrate and value all types of diversity
4C - Ensure communication is free of stereotypes
4D - Reflect and nuture the positive aspects of indigenous cultures and traditions 



New enhanced search