Life for children in the UK can be tough. Almost 4 million live in poverty, obesity and mental health problems are rising, and many experience violence, abuse and neglect. So, here in the UK, we’re putting our years of experience working for children around the world into practice. We’re there throughout childhood, making sure that every child has the same chance to shine. We work with the hospitals where they are born, the schools where they learn and grow, and the communities that shape their lives.
Our Baby Friendly Initiative enables public services to better support families with feeding and developing close, loving relationships. The programme supports maternity, neonatal, health visiting and children’s center services, to ensure they are giving newborns and their families the best possible care. We’re also working with universities to ensure that newly qualified midwives and health visitors have the strong foundation of knowledge needed to care for families.
Through our Rights Respecting Schools Award, we work with schools in the UK to create environments where children are respected, their talents are nurtured and they are able to thrive. By embedding these values in daily school life, we can give children the best chance to lead happy, healthy lives and to be responsible, active citizens. Over 1.5 million children in the UK go to a Rights Respecting School and more than 4,500 schools up and down the country are working through the Award.
Our Child Friendly Cities and Communities programme brings UNICEF together with local government to put children’s rights at the heart of local services, policy and planning. We work with political leaders, front line staff, community organizations and more, to make sure children have a say in the decisions that affect them. It’s about supporting all children to flourish and engage actively with their communities. And it’s about valuing children, here and now, and working with communities to protect the most vulnerable.