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This map does not reflect a position by UNICEF on the legal status of any country or territory or the delimitation of any frontiers.

Although Honduras has made progress toward achieving many of the Millennium Development Goals, nearly two thirds of the nation's population still lives below the poverty line. The government's comprehensive poverty-reduction strategy is integral to improving health, education and social protection for the most vulnerable populations. Honduras has been hit unusually hard by tropical storms and hurricanes in recent years. Although loss of life was contained, many roads, schools, health centres and crops were severely damaged or destroyed.

Issues facing children in Honduras

  • Social expenditures on behalf of children are increasing, but remain at little more than half of the target called for in the MDGs.
  • Infant, under-five and maternal mortality rates remain stubbornly high. Over one-third of infants are malnourished.
  • Some 18 per cent of the population has no access to basic health services, 10 per cent of the population lacks access to safe water and one-third of the population lacks access to sanitation.
  • Chronic malnutrition decreased from 38 per cent to 25 per cent in the past several years. It remains high, however, due to limited availability of food, inadequate nutritional practices and the impact of disease
  • The average number of years of schooling stands at only 4.3 in rural areas and 7 in urban areas. The main causes of these low numbers lie in inadequate teachers' competencies, scarcity of teaching materials, poor physical learning environments and limited interaction between schools and communities. In rural and indigenous areas, the curricula, materials and teaching methods are not adapted to the cultural context.
  • HIV prevalence is 1.8 per cent, the second highest in Latin America. Each day, nine children lose one of their parents to AIDS. Half of all new reported cases occur among females.
  • Children are vulnerable to violence, sexual exploitation and trafficking. Young people also fall victim to sex tourism and child labour.

Activities and results for children

  • The publication of UNICEF's 'State of Honduran Children 2007' was a milestone. Responding to the report's content, the government initiated a constructive dialogue, presenting a thorough position paper analyzing public policies and budget allocations for children, and opening a promising dialogue on policies and budgets in coming years.
  • A general revision of all legislation affecting children and families was conducted recently, with an eye toward comprehensive legal reform.
  • UNICEF helped the government develop national strategies to combat gang-related violence and the sexual exploitation and trafficking of children. The criminal code was reformed to address sexual exploitation, and a national office was created to prosecute sex crimes against children.
  • An integrated early childhood development programme known as PROACPIN is lowering maternal and infant mortality rates, reducing malnutrition and increasing pre-school enrolment rates.
  • More than 150 health centres in 56 municipalities have been equipped to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV.
  • The child-friendly school model endorsed by UNICEF has been expanded to 80 schools in 21 municipalities; several of its elements have been incorporated into the national education curriculum.
  • In the wake of several years of particularly punishing hurricanes and tropical storms, UNICEF has been integral in delivering emergency supplies and services in the form of hygiene kits, medicines, water and sanitation supplies and education materials for affected children and their families.



Basic Indicators

Under-5 mortality rank


Under-5 mortality rate (U5MR), 1990


Under-5 mortality rate (U5MR), 2012


U5MR by sex 2012, male


U5MR by sex 2012, female


Infant mortality rate (under 1), 1990


Infant mortality rate (under 1), 2012


Neonatal mortality rate 2012


Total population (thousands) 2012


Annual no. of births (thousands) 2012


Annual no. of under-5 deaths (thousands) 2012


GNI per capita (US$) 2012


Life expectancy at birth (years) 2012


Total adult literacy rate (%) 2008-2012*


Primary school net enrolment ratio (%) 2008-2011*


Definitions and data sources [popup]

Source: The State of the World's Children

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