By November 17, 2012 Read More →

Focus on sustainable development for children

Focus on sustainable development for children

The UNICEF Executive Board opened its 2012 Annual Session at UN headquarters in New York today.

His Excellency John W. Ashe, President of the UNICEF Executive Board, during his opening remarks stated : “We have much to be proud of in the achievement of both national and international goals and targets, especially the Millennium Development Goals. However, meeting goals will not be enough in many cases, in order to have lasting value, they must be achieved with equity, especially for the most disadvantaged.”  He stressed that while significant progress in reducing child mortality and boosting child health and education has been made, global efforts must now focus on promoting sustainable improvement to children’s welfare, particularly for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged.

UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake, in his opening statement, also emphasized this theme.  “There is mounting evidence to suggest that investing in the social sectors and in children equitably, especially in their health and their education, breaks the intergenerational transmission of poverty, creates more stable societies and contributes to sustainable growth,”

Deputy Executive Director Geeta Rao Gupta indicated that, “disparities in some areas grew wider,” she noted. Many communities continue to lack access to safe sanitation, and children in the poorest quintile – the bottom 20 per cent – continue to face staggering deprivations. “More work is needed to address these and other disparities,” Ms. Gupta said.

Catering for the physical needs of a child certainly creates a firm, stable foundation within which a child can flourish.  However the responsibility that adults have towards children does not end there.  A child’s heart and mind are the most precious resources and deserve special attention and care.  Initiatives to address personal development, values and emotional resilience will be an excellent complement to the existing programmes on the agenda.

Posted in: Sustainability

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