International conventions and declarations: young children

The Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1989 laid down the framework for international and national agendas. In 1990, the World Conference on Education for All recalled that education is a human right for all and aimed to make primary education universally available. In recognition of the right of the infant to nutritious food, the international community set an agenda on the support of breastfeeding. However, action is needed in law, policy and practice so that the contributions children make and the capacities they hold are acknowledged. Very young children can and need to be included in programmes that address their status as rights holders.

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Selected resources

1990 - 2005 Celebrating the Innocenti declaration on the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding


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In 1990, the Innocenti Declaration on the Protection, Promotion and Support of Breastfeeding set an international agenda on breastfeeding and the recognition ofthe right of the infant to nutritious food enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child. This publication reviews the context of the Innocenti Declaration and analyzes the achievements that have been realized towards the targets that were established in 1990. It describes the continuing and new challenges that exist to optimal feeding of infants and young children, and suggests a way forward towards the global aim of ensuring universal enjoyment of children’s right to adequate nutrition.

A guide to General Comment 7 : implementing child rights in early childhood


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The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child applies to all children under 18 - but its implementation poses particular practical challenges when it comes to young children. This book is a guide to implementing child rights in early childhood. It is based around the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child's General Comment no 7. It contains extracts from the papers submitted to the committee at the time of the Day of General Discussion which preceded the General Comment, and other relevant material

A summary of the rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child


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The Convention on the Rights of the Child was the first instrument to incorporate the complete range of international human rights, including civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights as well as aspects of humanitarian law. UNICEF has published this 'plain language' document as a guide to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The Convention recognises a child as a person below the age of 18. Specific articles relate to early childhood development, such as article 7 on the right to a legally registered name, article 8 on the right to an identity and article 30 on the right of minority or indigenous children to learn about and practice their own culture, language and religion.

Assessment of district performance in making progress towards MDGs in Bangladesh

DE ROOY, Carel
WANG, Siping

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This brief paper seeks to make a trend analysis over the 2000 to 2006 period using eight indicators that could be compared over time to assess progress made in Bangladesh towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. The indicators are: * Infant mortality rate (IMR), * Proportion of births not attended by skilled health personnel, * Proportion of children six to 59 months without supplementation of vitamin A, * Proportion of households without consuming iodized salt, * Proportion of households without access to an improved water source, * Proportion of households without access to an adequate sanitation facility, * Proportion of primary school age children not attending school, and; * Proportion of children under-5 without a birth registration

Briefing for the day of the African child : reaching Millennium Development Goal 4 : what progress has Africa made and what more needs to be done?

HARTILL, Richard G
June 2009

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This briefing document reviews examples of the progress that Africa has made in reaching the Accelerated Action Towards Africa Fit for Children 2008 - 2012 as adopted by the African Union and Member States in the agreed actions related to Enhancing Life Chances and Child Survival and looks at what more needs to be done. The commitment, "Enhancing Life Chances", entails strengthening health systems to provide quality maternal and child health services; scaling up essential interventions to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality and reduce neonatal mortality; scaling up a minimum package of proven child health interventions; and supporting family and community based actions that enhance children’s health, nutrition and well-being including potable water, improved sanitation and hygiene, appropriate young child feeding practices and food security measures

Children and armed conflict : a guide to international humanitarian and human rights law

LANDRY, Guillaume

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This guide offers a full understanding of the current challenges faced by children in armed conflict and the international law, norms and developments that apply to children in these situations. It is divided into two sections: the first gives sets out the background context of the situation; and the second section looks at particular issue faced by children affected by armed conflict and the international law and other developments that attempt to address these issues. The conclusion of the guide, examines the extent of the application of international law and standards, according to the experience of children and young people from Colombia and northern Uganda. There are also a number of annexes designed to further assist practitioners in their analysis, advocacy efforts, provision of care and practice

Children and the millennium development goals : progress towards a world fit for children

December 2007

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This is an adaptation of the Secretary-General’s report, ‘Follow-up to the special session of the General Assembly on children’ of 15 August 2007. It contains updated data and presents information from 121 country and territory reports. New information and analysis on how far the world has come in addressing the goals set out in the 27th Special Session of the General Assembly in 2002 is presented in the following chapters: - What have we done for children? - Promoting healthy lives. - Providing quality education. - Protecting against abuse, exploitation and violence. - Combating HIV and AIDS

Programming experiences in early childhood development

November 2006

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This document presents examples and case studies from 21 countries. They demonstrate the benefit of cross-sectoral programming to support early childhood development, some building on early child care or education programme

Protect for the future : placing children's protection and care at the heart of the MDGs

DELAP, Emily
et al
July 2010

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This paper argues that, in relation to children, this vital change in approach must go beyond a consideration of survival, health and education rights already specifically referred to in the millennium development goals (MDGs), to encompass rights relating to children’s protection and care. These include recognition of the central importance of family-based care for child wellbeing, and children’s rights to be free from violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect. It is argued that only through a consideration of such rights will it be possible to make wide-reaching and sustainable progress in efforts to alleviate child poverty, increase access to education, improve maternal and child health, and reduce the spread of HIV and AIDS

The evolving capacities of the child


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The Convention on the Rights of the Child introduces for the first time in an international human rights treaty, the concept of the 'evolving capacities' of the child. This principle has been described as a new principle of interpretation in international law, recognising that, as children acquire enhanced competencies, there is a diminishing need for protection and a greater capacity to take responsibility for decisions affecting their lives. The Convention allows for the recognition that children in different environments and cultures, and faced with diverse life experiences, will acquire competencies at different ages. Action is needed in law, policy and practice so that the contributions children make and the capacities they hold are acknowledged. The purpose of the study is to open the discussion and promote debate to achieve a better understanding of how children can be protected, in accordance with their evolving capacities, and also provided with opportunities to participate in the fulfillment of their rights. Although the paper discusses children of all ages, section 2 (p.12) focuses on early childhood development and the cultural environment

World declaration on education for all and framework for action to meet basic learning needs


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In 1990, delegates from 155 countries, as well as representatives from some 150 organisations agreed at the World Conference on Education for All in Jomtien, Thailand (5-9 March 1990) to universalise primary education and massively reduce illiteracy before the end of the decade. This is the World Declaration on Education for All: Meeting Basic Learning Needs, arising from the conference. Amongst other things, it recalls that education is a human right for all and recognises that traditional knowledge and indigenous cultural heritage have a value and validity in their own right and a capacity to both define and promote development

The Convention on the Rights of the Child and young children


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This edition of Early Childhood Matters provides arguments, examples of work at all levels, and analyses to contribute to the discussions needed to elevate the Convention on the Rights of the Child to its rightful place in early childhood programming as a key strategy in realising the aspirations of the Convention. Built on varied legal systems and cultural traditions, the Convention on the Rights of the Child is a universally agreed set of non-negotiable standards and obligations. There is no dedicated section that addresses the rights of children from birth to eight specifically, but rather encompasses children up to the age of 18. This paper argues that the world's young children demand special attention to reflect their particular needs

The state of the world's children : special edition

et al
November 2009

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This report celebrates 20 years of the Convention of the Rights of the Child. Chapters consider the timeless relevance of the convention; offer essays on a number of different perspectives on the convention; and look at the challenges for making the convention a reality in the 21st century. The online pack includes the report, statistics, panels, photo panels, a video and a press centre

Education for All|United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (EFA - UNESCO)


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7 Place de Fontenoy
75352 Paris 07 SP

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation programme 'Education for All' is a global campaign, born in 1990 at the World Conference on Education for all in Jomtien in Thailand. It has six goals, three of which are based around inclusive basic and primary education. These are (i) improve comprehensive early childhood care and education, especially for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children (ii) ensuring all children have access to quality primary education by 2015, including girls and ethnic minorities, (iii) eliminating gender disparities in primary education by 2015. An evaluation undertaken in 1998 showed that these goals were only partially being met, with the worst performers in the South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa regions. A new conference took place in Dakar, Senegal to reinvigorate committment to the Education For All programme. In the 1990s education was recognised as a right, and the important role it plays in social and economic development gave new momentum to NGOs and and civil society working in this area. Against this background, there is renewed optimism in achieving the aims of this campaign

Indigenous Knowledge Programme|World Bank


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1818 H Street NW
Washington DC 20433

The World Bank Group’s mission is to fight poverty and improve the living standards of people in the developing world. It is a development bank which provides loans, policy advice, technical assistance and knowledge sharing services to low and middle income countries to reduce poverty. The Indigenous Knowledge Programme manages a website which is a knowledge source designed to assist policy makers, programme managers, and practitioners in development approaches that rely on traditional knowledge systems to help achieve the millennium development goals. The team has developed a number of manuals, which can be accessed through the website, and manages the Bank's portfolio of indigenous knowledge projects and programmes