Child Rights - UNICEF Aotearoa visits Poipoi School

Child Rights

  1. Home

  2. About UNICEF

  3. Child Rights

In 1989, world leaders came together and agreed on a ground-breaking treaty to guide and protect kids across the globe.

This was the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. It’s since been embraced by more countries than any other human rights agreement in history, and its impact on the lives of kids around the world has been absolutely incredible!

The Convention recognises 42 basic human rights that apply to all children, without any discrimination.

It doesn't matter where they come from, what gender they are, or what religion they follow.

It's not just up to parents or governments, though - even children themselves play a role in shaping a world that's all about freedom and equality!

Child Rights - UNICEF Aotearoa
Child Rights - UNICEF Aotearoa

These rights are in place to ensure that every child, from the moment they're born until they hit 18, has an equal chance to pursue their dreams.

It's not about some kids being lucky enough to have a good life, while others miss out. The Convention states that the essentials for a quality life, such as food, shelter, clean water and safety, should be the birth right of every child, not just a privileged few.

Pretty awesome.

It’s sparked some serious transformations around the globe. Governments have been motivated to revamp their laws, policies, and even invest more to ensure that kids receive proper healthcare and nutrition for their growth and survival.

On top of that, there are now stronger measures in place to shield children from violence and exploitation.


The convention has also opened doors for kids to have a say in their communities and be heard. They can actively participate and make their voices count! How cool is that?

The 42 Rights

The 42 Child Rights explained
Decorative Indigo star scribble on top right
The 42 Child Rights


Want to learn more about Child Rights?

Kids at Poipo School in New Zealand learning from UNICEF about their child rights
Check out our other downloadable resources!
Child Rights Resources for Children
Resources for Adults & Teachers
E-Course: Child Rights & Why They Matter
Advocacy Resources + Toolkit for Children & Young People

We’re committed to transparency. To see how we split up expenses and manage our costs, read our annual report or visit UNICEF Open to see a live overview of all our projects.

world map

UNICEF Aotearoa is a registered charity with the New Zealand Charities Commission (CC35979), making you eligible for a tax refund of up to a third of your donation. All transactions are billed in New Zealand dollars.

UNICEF Aotearoa operates from Level 5, 86 Victoria Street, Wellington 6011, New Zealand.