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UNICEF Social Inclusion, Policy and Budgeting

Sustainable development starts and ends with safe, healthy and well-educated children

Cover Image
TYPE Working Paper
DATE 2013
TOPIC Child poverty and disparities

In this paper, we explore the dynamic and dramatic interplay between the realization of children’s rights and sustainable development. The evidence presented makes a powerful case for why and how these issues must be directly addressed in the discussions towards a Post-2015 Development Agenda and the eventual framework that will emerge. It is a call to action for decision-makers to invest in children’s rights and well-being as an integral means to achieving sustainable development.

This paper complements UNICEF’s 10 Key Messages on the Post-2015 Development Agenda3 and is organized in three main sections:

The first section sets the context: how and why children are central to the concept, principles and future progress of sustainable development – and why sustainable development, in turn, is crucial for children.

The second section introduces three key messages for the attention of decision-makers on the Post-2015 Development Agenda on the centrality of children and young people to sustainable development:

1. Sustainable development starts with safe, healthy and well-educated children;

2. Safe and sustainable societies are, in turn, essential for children; and

3. Children’s voices, choices and participation are critical for the sustainable future we want.

The third and final section "makes the case" to support these key messages by providing powerful supporting evidence and recommendations on how to integrate consideration of children’s rights and well-being into the Post-2015 Development Agenda.



Download Sustainable development starts and ends with safe, healthy and well-educated children