UNICEF was established in the aftermath of World War II to help children whose lives and futures were at risk – no matter what country they were from.
The only thing that mattered to UNICEF was reaching children in need.
What mattered was achieving results.
The same holds true today. We work day-in and day-out, in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the children who are most at risk and most in need. We work to save their lives and keep them safe from harm. We work to give them a childhood in which they’re loved, protected, healthy, educated and able to fulfil their potential.
That’s what UNICEF does. And we never give up.


1. Local presence, global reach

UNICEF is active in 190 countries and territories. Our vast network means we can take successful approaches from one place in the world and adapt them to meet challenges elsewhere, helping drive results for children at a global scale.

Click to play video about Livey, an HIV-positive mother and inspiring young mayor in Nambia.

Livey, 31, has gone from being a pregnant and HIV-positive teenager to becoming a fulfilled mother and an inspiring young mayor in Namibia. Her life tells a powerful story of courage and hope, in which UNICEF played a crucial role to help her not only survive, but also thrive.

2. Saving more lives for less money

UNICEF is funded entirely by voluntary contributions – and we are committed to making every dollar go further to save and improve children’s lives.

As one of the world’s largest buyers of lifesaving supplies such as vaccines and mosquito nets, UNICEF has unique leverage to negotiate the lowest prices. Buying big and being transparent enables us to shape markets, cut costs and increase efficiency – and, most importantly, save more lives.

Click to play video about Juan Carlos who fell victim to a landmine accident at the age of 5.

Juan Carlos was born during the Salvadoran Civil War. He fell victim to a landmine accident at the age of 5, and lost all four limbs. UNICEF provided him with support and rehabilitation services so he could grow up, graduate from law school, marry and pursue his passion of painting.

3. Emergency response and readiness

UNICEF is on the ground before, during and after humanitarian emergencies. Our global supply chain and local presence mean we can get help to where it's needed fast – we can ship lifesaving supplies almost anywhere in the world within 48 hours.

Just as important, UNICEF stays and delivers. How we respond in crises lays the foundation for long-term development, just as how we work in non-crisis situations helps communities to weather future shocks.

Click to play video about Salamatu who experienced the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone.

Salamatu Korsu, 10, experienced the horror of one of the worst health crises in recent history: the Ebola outbreak. Her neighbourhood in Sierra Leone recorded some of the first cases of Ebola infection in 2014. UNICEF supported the hospital where the young girl was treated and provided care after her discharge.

4. New solutions to old problems

Innovation is at the heart of UNICEF’s ability to achieve results for children. Our global innovation centre helps scale up proven solutions, while a dedicated innovation fund provides financial resources to promising early-stage projects. The results? A new wave of technologies and products to help us reach the hardest-to-reach children and communities.

Click to play video about Agamemnon who benefitted from UNICEF relief efforts in Greece in the 1950s.

Agamemnon Stefanatos was born in 1953, just after a massive earthquake had ravaged his native island in Greece, killing more than 1,000 people. He survived because of the timely arrival of milk and clothes for newborns that UNICEF had shipped as part of its relief efforts.

5. Powerful partnerships

Strong partnerships with governments, NGOs, civil society and the private sector make UNICEF’s work for children possible. In turn, our credibility, impartiality and record of achieving results make us a partner of choice.

Global brands – from Ikea and Lego to Unilever – leverage their resources and drive innovation to help children. Our exceptionally generous supporters make a difference through donating, volunteering and being advocates for children in their communities.

And of course, UNICEF’s ability to achieve results for every child depends on our most important partners – governments, which provide critical resources that enable us to reach children wherever they are.

Click to play video about 10-year-old Syrian Hiba who lives in a refugee and migrant transit centre.

Hiba Al Nabolsi is a 10-year-old Syrian girl who grew up in conflict and endured a risky journey to safety. Today, she lives with her family in a refugee and migrant transit centre in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia where a UNICEF-supported child-friendly space brings hope for a better future.

6. An influential voice for children

UNICEF is the world’s leading voice for – and with – children. Impartial and non-political, we are never silent about violations of children’s rights.

Our research and reports are a leading source of data and information on the situation of children around the world for journalists, researchers, policy-makers and advocates.

Our Goodwill Ambassadors – from Danny Kaye and Audrey Hepburn in UNICEF’s early years to major public figures and influencers today – help inspire people around the world to support the cause of children.

In all we do, we work to engage and empower young people to have a voice in the decisions that affect their lives.

For every child