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Over the past decade, child marriage has continued to decline. Globally, the proportion of young women who were married as children decreased from 1 in 4 to about 1 in 5. It is now estimated that a total of 650 million girls and women alive today were married as children.
However, the current rate of decline in child marriage is not sufficient to meet the SDG target of ending child marriage by 2030. What's more, the reduction in child marriage has been uneven. While South Asia has led the way on reducing child marriage, the global burden is shifting to sub-Saharan Africa, where rates of progress need to be accelerated dramatically to reduce the prevalence and offset population growth.
The elimination of violence against children (VAC) is a challenge in all countries and in every society, race, class and culture. It is a violation of human rights, upheld in the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) which prescribes that every child has the right to survive, grow and be protected from all forms of violence. All children have the right to be respected for their human dignity, physical and psychological integrity and to equal protection.
Keywords: HIV, violence, abuse, children, sexual violence
This report from UNICEF shares new analysis on breastfeeding practices around the world and sets out key recommendations for governments, the private sector, civil society and communities in low-, middle- and high-income countries to increase breastfeeding rates. The report finds that more than 1 in 5 babies in high-income countries are never breastfed, compared to 1 in 25 in low- and middle-income countries.
Around the world, girls and young women are disproportionately affected by HIV. While there is limited evidence about the direct causal relationship between child marriage and HIV, many of the factors which put girls and young women at greater risk of HIV infection also put girls at increased risk of child marriage. Once married, child brides face profound health consequences as a result of their early marriage, and in some contexts, increased risk of HIV infection. There are therefore strong arguments for investing in girl-centred programmes which can simultaneously tackle the drivers of child marriage and new HIV infections among adolescent girls.
Find country-specific data from the Violence Against Children Survey (VACS) in select Together for Girls partner countries: Cambodia, Lao PDR. Scroll through the carousel below to view the documents.
- Lao PDR
Deaths among children aged 1 month to 5 years old have fallen dramatically in recent decades. But progress in reducing the deaths of newborn babies – those aged less than 1 month – has been less impressive, with 7,000 newborns still dying every day. This is partly because newborn deaths are difficult to address with a single drug or intervention – they require a system-wide approach. It is also due to a lack of momentum and global commitment to newborn survival. We are failing the youngest, most vulnerable people on the planet – and with so many millions of lives at stake, time is of the essence.
Keywords: mortality rates, breastfeeding, health system
The INSPIRE handbook: action for implementing the seven strategies for ending violence against children explains in detail how to choose and implement interventions that will fit your needs and context. The seven strategy-specific chapters address the Implementation and enforcement of laws; Norms and values; Safe environments; Parent and caregiver support; Income and economic strengthening; Response and support services; and Education and life skills. The handbook concludes with a summary of INSPIRE’s implementation and impact indicators, drawn from the companion INSPIRE indicator guidance and results framework.
Keywords: children, violence, bullying, laws, support
The 2018 United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting (HLM) on Tuberculosis and the current revision of the Roadmap for childhood tuberculosis together present an important moment to consolidate and advance advocacy, commitment, resource mobilization and joint efforts by all stakeholders to provide health care and address the burden of TB among children
Keywords: TB, HIV, multidrug-resistant, treatment, advocacy
The purpose of the study is to gather findings from efforts to prevent and respond to child marriage in both development and humanitarian contexts and determine what Save the Children and other organizations can do to improve their response to this critical issue. The study adds to existing research by synthesizing the most up-todate literature, bringing the voices of practitioners and experts into the discussion, and examining the topic of child marriage interventions in a humanitarian context for the first time.
Keywords: children, advocacy, protection, education, health, rights
This report details key results achieved in 2017 by UNICEF and partners – including children and young people themselves – and looks to the strategic challenges ahead. Against a backdrop of widespread conflict, instability and displacement, the report highlights UNICEF’s efforts to advance innovation, efficiency, transparency and financial stewardship in 2017. It also takes note of successful advocacy activities focused on child survival and health, early childhood development, violence against children, and child migrants and refugees. The report demonstrates UNICEF’s commitment to investing in the rights of excluded and disadvantaged children and young people, and providing them with opportunities to grow up healthy, educated and protected.
Keywords: HIV/AIDS, children, young people, health