UNICEF and partners support efforts to eliminate child labour to ensure that every child can fulfil their potential
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Child labour harms the mental, social, physical and psychological development of children.
For little pay, children work long hours to contribute to their family income, often under hazardous conditions. Working prevents children from going to school, spending time with peers and having opportunities for play and leisure.
Field observations and available information show that an increasing number of refugee children are falling into some of the worst forms of child labour - in seasonal agriculture, small-medium enterprises (textile or shoe workshops or auto-mechanics), and working on the streets.
Eliminating child labour in all sectors is a national target. UNICEF in Turkey works to eliminate child labour targeting Turkish and refugee children through a multi-sectoral strategy involving capacity development, support to services for families at risk, and evidence generation and advocacy. We work in partnership with ministries, employer associations, municipalities, NGOs and other UN agencies.
Our work in eliminating child labour is built on 5 key pillars:
- Expanding access to child protection, social protection, health and education services (including both formal and non-formal education) for all Turkish and refugee children and families engaged in or at risk of child labour
- Strengthening the capacity of TVET and formal apprenticeship programs to provide relevant skills and serve as an alternative to child labour
- Strengthening the capacity of national institutions to coordinate and monitor efforts to eliminate child labor;
- Changing social norms and discriminatory practices that contribute to the perpetuation of child labour in Turkey; and
- Generating evidence to inform policy dialogue on improving social protection systems and mechanisms to better adress child labour
Major partners of UNICEF in Turkey on eliminating child labour are:
- The Government of Turkey, particularly the Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Services; and the Ministry of National Education
- Municipalities and municipal associations such as the Union of Municipalities of Turkey
- Private sector and employer associations, such as the Turkish Confederation of Craftsmen and Tradesmen
- Academia and non-governmental organizations, Development Workshop Cooperative; Support to Life Association.
- Other international development organizations and UN agencies, such as ILO.