Every child has rights, no matter their gender, race, religion, location or situation. Our role is to help every one of them have a fair go at life.
The poorest children in the world are twice as likely to die before their fifth birthday and to be chronically malnourished than the richest. UNICEF believes a child's location, gender, or socio-economic status shouldn't determine whether they access the rights they deserve.
UNICEF is working towards a world where no child goes hungry, misses out on a quality education, or dies of a preventable disease.
You can support us in ensuring that children everywhere can survive, participate, and reach their potential.
In 2015, nearly one in five infants missed out on the basic vaccines they needed to stay healthy
Poverty reduction means parents are not forced to send their children to work or sell them to employers in order to survive.
It is critical to improve a child's awareness of their fundamental human rights, as well as to enhance their employment opportunities later in life.
The world must stay informed about the injustices of child labour. We must raise awareness of exploited children and work towards giving them a better future.
Children with disabilities are one of society's most marginalised groups, and they face daily discrimination.
Their disabilities mean that they are less likely to attend school, access adequate healthcare, and have their voices heard.
Only 1% of the world's children in need of a wheelchair have access to one. In developing countries, less than 3% of children in need of a hearing aid have one.
UNICEF provides hearing aids, wheelchairs, eye glasses, braille systems, adapted cutlery, and prosthetics wherever they are needed by children.
Promoting gender equality benefits everyone, but deep-rooted discrimination must first be overcome.
Across much of South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, children born to mothers with no education are almost 3 times more likely to die before they are 5 than those born to mothers with a secondary education.
Allowing girls to reach their full potential benefits the individual, her family, her community and ultimately her country.
A complete and quality education means better employment prospects, increased wages, less likelihood of child marriage, smaller families, better child-rearing skills, and national economic growth. So why is correcting inequality not always a priority for Governments around the world?
To combat gender discrimination in education, schools must be created where violence and bias against girls is not tolerated, and the curriculum and teaching methods reflect gender equality.
In the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia regions, girls aged 5–14 spend nearly twice as many hours per week on household chores as boys of the same age.
The division of labour along gender lines is hugely damaging - both to the individual and the community.The unbalanced distribution of work prevents girls from focusing on their education, leisure, play and enjoying a regular childhood.
In every country, laws need to be in place to address domestic and gender-based violence.
Where they are currently inadequate, property and inheritance laws need to be reformed to give women greater access to land and property.
Existing laws against gender discrimination must be consistently enforced, and women must also be offered the same opportunities as men to participate fully in society.
To achieve gender equality, financial resources must be used appropriately.
Programmes that benefit girls and women – in education, health care, enforcing laws relating to equal pay and property rights, monitoring inequality, and investing in infrastructure that reduces women’s work loads – all require adequate funds.
Government budgets must consider the impact on women of how money is spent.
By working at national, local and community levels, UNICEF strives to combat inequality and give every child a fair childhood.
There is no quick fix approach to combating childhood inequality. It requires hard questions to be put to Governments, and progress cannot be made unless societies have a willingness to change. We need to know who is not getting a fair go, and why, and find innovative solutions to reach every child in need.
If we don't invest in children now, our world will become even more divided and unequal. Your support will help us to advocate for kids, provide educational programmes, and work with governments everywhere to recognise child rights.
Read the stories of how UNICEF is on the ground, helping families affected by cyclones, droughts, food insecurity and water shortages.
UNICEF NZ helps save and protect the world's most vulnerable children