Social Policy

Reducing child poverty

A family
UNICEF Montenegro / Zoran Jovanovic Maccak / 2006

The challenge

Child poverty undermines equity and contributes to poorer outcomes in health, nutrition education and general wellbeing for children who live in the poorest households. Poorer children are also more vulnerable to the impacts of natural and man-made disasters and to abuse and exploitation. Child poverty is also an obstacle to fulfilling all aspects of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

In Montenegro, 32% of children aged 0 to 17 are at risk of poverty. 40% of children are at risk of poverty or social exclusion.  

Poverty is transmitted from one generation to the next. Breaking the cycle of poverty depends on investments by governments, civil society and families in child wellbeing and equity. No society has ever seen a broad-based reduction in poverty without major and sustained investments in children. Strategic investments in children, particularly in early childhood contribute to long term economic growth. Harnessing the potential of all children to grow and contribute to economic and democratic development is a pre-requisite for securing a better future for Montenegro.

The solution

Two Roma girls
UNICEF Montenegro / Zoran Jovanovic Maccak / 2006
brothers hugging each other
UNICEF Montenegro / Zoran Jovanovic Maccak / 2006

Systematic efforts are needed to strengthen the social protection system to ensure an adequate living standard of the most disadvantaged children and families. This is in line with 2030 Agenda, Montenegro’s commitments under the CRC and CRPD, the Europe 2020 strategy, the EU Social Inclusion Agenda to invest in children and break cycles of disadvantage, and the Government of Montenegro Strategy for Social and Child Protection (2018-2022). Establishment of child-friendly social protection services must proceed in parallel with stronger, inclusive health and education services, and the development of family and community-based support services.