CELEBRATING 25 YEARS

Why Children?

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PROTECTING THE MOST VULNERABLE

Why focus on children? In extreme weather, violence or poverty, children remain the most vulnerable population on the planet. World of Children is committed to seeing they are protected.

Children have a right to a basic quality of life

1

These rights recognize the fundamental human dignity of all children and the urgency of ensuring their well-being and development. They support the idea that a basic quality of life should be the right of all children, rather than a privilege enjoyed by a few. 

2

Children are dependent on others to meet their basic needs

The challenge is that childhood is arguably the most vulnerable period of human life. Children are highly dependent on others to satisfy their basic needs, and this makes them particularly at risk.  They are dependent on decisions that others make for them right from the start. This seems to be the most salient source of children's exposure.

3

Children require more resources at critical stages in their development

In addition to having others make decisions for them, did you know, compared to adults, children require more food and water per unit of their body weight, are less able to survive extreme weather events, and are more susceptible to toxic chemicals, temperature changes and diseases, among other factors?

4

Family & community environments can create vulnerability

Environmental factors contributing to child vulnerability operate at both family and community levels. Family factors include income poverty and material deprivation, parents' health and health behaviors, parents' education level, family stress and exposure to violence.  Children have never been able to control where they were born or to whom.

5

A child's inability to change their situation makes them no less vulnerable to the impact of crises like climate change or COVID

While children are not in control, they are increasingly aware that though they are least responsible for the crises we face, they are the ones who are most threatened by their impact, today and tomorrow:

  • Today’s generation of children is the first to grow up in a world made far more dangerous as a result of climate change.
     

  • The ripple effects of COVID-19.
     

  • Child labor, child marriage, and trafficking remain prevalent robbing millions of their childhoods.
     

  • In low-income countries, 95 percent of those disabled will never have access to wheelchairs, hearing aids, glasses, and other assistive technologies.

Children's futures affect all of us

Without change, millions of children face a grim future, and we risk a tragic waste of potential – for these children, their families, national economies and society. Children’s futures affect us all. At World of Children, we believe they are the future’s innovators, leaders, scientists, artists, mentors and our future changemakers. And they are all deserving of their childhood. In many respects, how we treat the most vulnerable among us reflects on all of us as a human family.

KEY DATA & INFORMATION ON THE MOST VULNERABLE

Understanding the scale of the challenges

EDUCATION

  • 263 million children and youth are out of school (UNESCO).
     

  • An estimated 61 million primary-school-age children are out of school; 53% of them are girls (UNICEF).
     

  • 14% of children and adolescents around the world do not have the opportunity TO ENTER OR COMPLETE SCHOOL securing their position to live a life in poverty.

HEALTH

  • There are 69 million children worldwide who suffer from malnutrition (World Bank)
     

  • Nearly half of all deaths in children under the age of 5 can be attributed to undernutrition, resulting in the unnecessary loss of about 3 million young lives a year (UNICEF).
     

  • 66 million primary-school-age children attend classes hungry across the developing world, with 23 million in Africa alone (WHO).​
     

  • About 45% of child deaths are linked to malnutrition (WHO).

MORTALITY

  • 2.7 million children die every year in the first month of life, and a similar number are stillborn (WHO). 
     

  • Approximately 15,000 children under the age of five DIE EVERY DAY FROM PREVENTABLE CAUSES 1 child every 17 seconds because they cannot get the care they need. (WHO).
     

POVERTY

  • Children represent roughly a third of the world's population but account for almost half of all people living in extreme poverty (UNICEF).
     

  • 66 million primary school-age children living in the global south GO TO SCHOOL HUNGRY, if they are lucky enough to be in school.

WAR & CONFLICT

  • There are over 250 million children living in countries affected by conflict (UNICEF).
     

  • 1 in 4 of the world's children live in a conflict or disaster zone (UNICEF).
     

  • 10,000 unaccompanied migrant children are missing in Europe (Europol).

WHAT IF WE COULD DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT?

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AWARDING THE WORLD'S TOP HUMANITARIANS

Meet our Changemakers.
Hear the stories of impact and transformation in the lives of the children they serve
(and their own).

NORMA CHÁVEZ-PETERSON

2019 CRISIS AWARD
San Diego Rapid Response Network

“World of Children is one of the most effective and efficient mid-sized nonprofit organizations in the world.”

Caryl M. Stern, Former President & CEO, UNICEF USA

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