Today, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution to strengthen the protection of children affected by armed conflict. Alhaji Babah Sawaneh, pictured with our Executive Director Anthony Lake, was the first former child soldier to address the Security Council in 2001, when he was only 14. He recalled how he was abducted as a child and forced to fight in Sierra Leone’s violent conflict, and how once he fled, he received support to reintegrate into society.
Now he’s back to tell his story again – with an update. Two years ago, he finished a degree in peace and conflict resolution and now he works on peacebuilding in his country. “We need to speak out, to change the equation. We need to stop war, to stop the violations against children,” he said.
Find out more about the #CHILDRENnotSoldiers campaign we’re jointly running with The Office of the UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict: http://uni.cf/1fPyJo2
Today 78 countries around the world have laws that subject their citizens to severe criminal penalties for homosexuality. Such laws not only undermine human rights – they can also fuel discrimination, stigma, and even violence against people on the basis of their perceived sexual orientation and gender identities. And the impact of these laws can be even more severe on children and adolescents, who are especially vulnerable to bullying, violence, and stigma.
All people have a right to live a life of dignity, free from discrimination — irrespective of their gender identity or sexual orientation. Any law which heightens the risk of harm to children is counter to the principles established in the Convention on the Right of the Child, and the universal human instinct to protect children.
UNICEF will continue working to protect all children from discrimination, including those who identify as LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, or Transgender), and we urge governments to safeguard their youngest citizens from violence or threat of reprisal for exercising their rights.
“I had not imagined, when I joined UNICEF as a child protection officer, that burying the bodies of children would be something I would do.”
Read Masumi Yamashima’s harrowing, heartbreaking account from Malakal, one of the flashpoints of devastating recent violence in South Sudan: http://uni.cf/1kuPn4k
“Seeing the impact of our work on the most vulnerable…that’s my main source of satisfaction and my greatest driver.” -
Cristian Mazzei, Executive Officer of the Director in Governance, UN and Multilateral Affairs, UNICEF HQ, New York
What does the average working day look like for an Executive Officer?
Busy! Keeping abreast of all developments in the Division and in UNICEF at large; monitoring…
Children in Central African Republic can imagine a brighter future. Can you?
More than a million people have been displaced by recent violence across CAR with children suffering the most. Thank you UNICEF Central African Republic for the reminder that a peaceful future starts with children.
“Humanity starts at home.” -
Adam Wade, Web Producer, Division of Communication, UNICEF HQ, New York
Today we have a very special Faces of UNICEF. Meet Adam Wade, from New Hampshire, USA. As well as being a web produced for us, he’s also a renowned storyteller and comedian – check out his website & Twitter…
Don’t let the #childrenofsyria lose another year to bloodshed and suffering: http://bit.ly/nolostgeneration
Sign our petition to world leaders calling for:
-An end to the violence against Syrian children.
-An end to the blocking of humanitarian aid.
-An end to attacks on humanitarian workers, schools and hospitals.
-More investment in education and psychological protection for all children affected.
TAKE ACTION: http://bit.ly/nolostgeneration
There’s no Sochi Winter Olympics medal for this event. This girl’s walk to school in Western Mongolia at the foot of the Altai Mountains is several kilometres long and in freezing temperatures.
We support the right of all children to learn - even in the remotest corners of the world.