Child Poverty

Promoting strategies to reduce child poverty

© UNICEF/UN059152/Vilca

Children and adolescents not only have specific needs that are different from those of the adult population, but, especially in the first years of life, are dependent on care and susceptible about what happens in their family or closest environment. In addition, it has been well demonstrated that short periods of deprivation and poverty can have irreversible long-term consequences on the cognitive, nutritional, physical, social and emotional development of children.

Added to this context, in monetary terms, poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean has a clear intergenerational bias: the incidence of poverty for the group of children and adolescents up to 14 years old is 19 percentage points higher than that of the group of people between 35 and 44 years old, and 31 percentage points more compared to people 65 years of age or older. If this condition of deprivation of the child population is not taken into account in the design of social policies, there is a risk of repeating the intergenerational cycles of poverty in the region.

From UNICEF, we technically assist governments to adopt a multidimensional approach in the conceptualization of poverty, which addresses more adequately the deprivations suffered by children and adolescents. In addition, we promote the linking of the results of child poverty with the design and adaptation of comprehensive social protection programs that contribute to the simultaneous reduction of deprivation, that enlarge the available resources and increase their effectiveness.


Country/Area Publication title Year Author
Argentina La pobreza monetaria en la niñez y la adolescencia en Argentina 2017 UNICEF-IELDE
Argentina Bienestar y pobreza en niñas, niños y adolescentes en Argentina 2016 UNICEF
Bolivia Study on child poverty and disparities N/A UNICEF-UDAPE
Brazil Pobreza na Infância e na Adolescência 2018 UNICEF
Costa Rica Índice de bienestar de la niñez y la Adolescencia 2014 UNICEF-Mideplan
El Salvador Medición multidimensional de la pobreza en El Salvador: Una mirada a las familias con niñas, niños y adolescentes 2015 UNICEF
Guatemala Pobreza multidimensional infantil en Guatemala: privaciones a superar 2016 UNICEF-ICEFI
Honduras Los múltiples rostros de la pobreza infantil en Honduras: un desafío prioritario 2016 UNICEF
Jamaica Child poverty and disparities in Jamaica 2009 UNICEF-PIOJ
Panamá Índice de pobreza multidimensional de niños, niñas y adolescentes en Panamá 2018 UNICEF-UNDP-OPHI-MEF-MIDES-INEC
Paraguay Pobreza infantil multidimensional en Paraguay - Documento de trabajo 2018 UNICEF
Uruguay Pobreza y privaciones múltiples en la infancia en Uruguay 2016 UNICEF-CEPAL
Latin America and the Caribbean Panorama social de América Latina 2013 - Capítulo II 2013 UNICEF-CEPAL
Latin America and the Caribbean Pobreza infantil en América Latina y el Caribe 2010 UNICEF-CEPAL
Latin America and the Caribbean Pobreza infantil en pueblos indígenas y afrodescendientes de América Latina 2010 UNICEF-CEPAL
Latin America and the Caribbean Guide to estimating child poverty = Guía para estimar la pobreza infantil N/A UNICEF-CEPAL
Eastern Caribbean Child poverty in the Eastern Caribbean Area 2017 UNICEDF-OECS
Global A world free from child poverty 2017 End Child Poverty Global Coalition