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Reaching results for children: Renewed partnership between the Russian Federation and UNICEF to contribute to improving the health of children in Tajikistan

Nearly 40,000 girls and boys under 5 years of age, their families and communities will directly benefit from new investment from the Government of the Russian Federation

DUSHANBE, 21 September 2016 – Today, the Embassy of the Russian Federation and UNICEF in Tajikistan signed a partnership agreement in the presence of the Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Republic of Tajikistan. The ceremony took place at the UN Information Resource Centre located in the Russian-Tajik Slavonic University.

The newly signed three-year agreement commits US$ 1.43 million aiming to improve the health of young children in Tajikistan, with special attention to maternal and newborn care. It will particularly contribute to the reduction of neonatal mortality and morbidity in Tajikistan. In addition, the project will ensure the provision of early detection and intervention services for children with development delays and disabilities.

It is estimated that the project will directly benefit around 40,000 neonates, children, their families and communities annually for three years through improved quality of both facility services and family care concerning maternal, neonatal and child health.

Photo by Jamshed Mamadjonov

Ms. Lucia Elmi, UNICEF Representative in Tajikistan Mr. Lyakin Florov Igor, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Tajikistan signed the agreement.

In the past decade, infant and child mortality have substantially decreased in Tajikistan. According to 2015 UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation (IGME), under-five mortality rate has dropped from 93 per 1000 live birth in 2000 to 45 in 2015; and infant mortality rate from 74 to 39. However, with these rates, still one in every 22 children newborn dies largely due to preventable diseases before reaching their fifth birthday.

Figures show less progress in neonatal mortality reduction. The UN IGME indicates neonatal mortality now at 21 per 1000 live births. This accounts for as high as 54 per cent of infant mortality rate and 48 per cent of under-five mortality rate in Tajikistan.

Maternal and child health remains among the top priorities of the Government of Tajikistan, as outlined in National Health Strategy 2010-2020. The country also demonstrated its commitment to child survival within series of global initiatives, particularly “A Promise Renewed” (2012) and the Sustainable Development Goals (2015).

Acknowledging the commitment by the Russian Federation at the signing, UNICEF Representative in Tajikistan Ms. Lucia Elmi stressed, “With a new investment from the Government of the Russian Federation and by joining our efforts with the Government of Tajikistan, civil society and communities, we will be able to renew our commitment to ending preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age. This target will ultimately contribute to reaching SDGs by 2030.”  

The Government of the Russian Federation has been a generous supporter for the well-being of girls and boys in Tajikistan. Within funds received from the Russian Federation in the recent years, UNICEF in Tajikistan has already achieved results for children in the area of immunisation, nutrition, and HIV. “With this new programme we, UNICEF, the Government of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Republic of Tajikistan and partners, honour our promises for children in Tajikistan to be healthier and reach their full potential– to the benefit of us all,” said Ms. Lucia Elmi.


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

Follow UNICEF in Tajikistan on Twitter and Facebook

For more information, please contact:

Parvina Muhamedkhojaeva (Ms), Communication officer, UNICEF Tajikistan, tel: (o) +992-44 6000190; (m) +992-939998914, email:

Read this press release in Tajik | Russian



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