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THE STATE OF THE WORLD’S CHILDREN 2012 - Executive Summary

THE STATE OF THE WORLD’S CHILDREN 2012 - Executive Summary

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The experience of childhood is increasingly urban. Over half
the world’s people – including more than a billion children –
now live in cities and towns.

While cities have long been associated with employment,
development and economic growth, hundreds of millions
of children in the world’s urban areas are growing up amid
scarcity and deprivation. The State of the World’s Children
2012 presents the hardships these children face as violations
of their rights as well as impediments to fulfilling the
Millennium Development Goals. The report examines major
phenomena shaping the lives of children in urban settings,
including migration, economic shocks and acute disaster risk.

Progress is possible. The State of the World’s Children 2012
provides examples of efforts to improve the urban realities
that children confront and identifies broad policy actions
that should be included in any strategy to reach excluded
children and foster equity in urban settings riven by disparity.
The experience of childhood is increasingly urban. Over half
the world’s people – including more than a billion children –
now live in cities and towns.

While cities have long been associated with employment,
development and economic growth, hundreds of millions
of children in the world’s urban areas are growing up amid
scarcity and deprivation. The State of the World’s Children
2012 presents the hardships these children face as violations
of their rights as well as impediments to fulfilling the
Millennium Development Goals. The report examines major
phenomena shaping the lives of children in urban settings,
including migration, economic shocks and acute disaster risk.

Progress is possible. The State of the World’s Children 2012
provides examples of efforts to improve the urban realities
that children confront and identifies broad policy actions
that should be included in any strategy to reach excluded
children and foster equity in urban settings riven by disparity.

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Published by: The United Nations Children's Fund on Feb 28, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/13/2014

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executive summarytHe state OF tHe WOrLD’s cHiLDreN2012
chldn nn un Wold
 
executive summary
Ke eoendons
inng n of hldn  gowng p n n . th   ffodd h nnd oppon h nd o lz h gh nd ponl. ugn on   kn o:1.
Better understand the scale and nature o poverty and exclusion aecting children in urban areas.
2.
Identiy and remove the barriers to inclusion.
3.
Ensure that urban planning, inrastructure development, service delivery and broader eorts toreduce poverty and inequality meet the particular needs and priorities o children.
4.
Promote partnership between all levels o government and the urban poor – especially childrenand young people.
5.
Pool the resources and energies o international, national, municipal and community actors insupport o eorts to ensure that marginalized and impoverished children enjoy their ull rights.These actions are not goals but means to an end: airer, more nurturing cities and societies or allpeople – starting with children.
tHe state OF tHe WOrLD’s cHiLDreN 2012cHiLDreN iN aN urbaN WOrLD
 
Children in an urban world 1
ExEcutivE Summary
inodon
The experience o childhood is increasingly urban. Over hal the world’s people – including more than a billion children –now live in cities and towns.While cities have long been associated with employment,development and economic growth, hundreds o millionso children in the world’s urban areas are growing up amidscarcity and deprivation.
The State of the World’s Children2012
presents the hardships these children ace as viola-tions o their rights as well as impediments to ullling theMillennium Development Goals. The report examines majorphenomena shaping the lives o children in urban settings,including migration, economic shocks and acute disaster risk.Progress is possible.
The State of the World’s Children 2012
 provides examples o eorts to improve the urban realitiesthat children conront and identies broad policy actionsthat should be included in any strategy to reach excludedchildren and oster equity in urban settings riven by disparity.
chlden n nnesngl bn wold
Every year, the world’s urban population increases by about60 million. By 2050, 7 in 10 people will live in cities andtowns. Most urban growth is taking place in Asia and Arica.Migration rom the countryside has long driven urbanexpansion and remains a major actor in some regions. Butthe last comprehensive estimate, made in 1998, suggests thatchildren born into existing urban populations account oraround 60 per cent o urban growth.Many children enjoy the advantages that urban lie oers,including access to educational, medical and recreationalacilities. Too many, however, are denied such essentials asclean water, electricity and health care – even though theymay live close to these services. Too many are orced intodangerous and exploitative work instead o being able toattend school. And too many ace a constant threat o evic-tion, although they already live under the most challengingconditions – in ramshackle dwellings and overcrowdedsettlements that are highly vulnerable to disease and disaster.The hardships endured by children in poor urban commu-nities are oten concealed – and thus perpetuated – by thestatistical averages on which development programmes anddecisions about resource allocation are based. Because aver-ages lump everyone together, the poverty o some is obscuredby the wealth o others. One consequence o this is that chil-dren already deprived remain excluded rom essential services.Where detailed urban data are available, they reveal dispar-ities in children’s rates o survival, nutritional status andeducation resulting rom unequal access to services. All overthe world, hundreds o millions o children in impoverishedurban neighbourhoods and inormal settlements conrontdaily violations o their rights despite living close to insti-tutions and services. In many countries, children living inurban poverty are as badly as, or worse than, children livingin rural poverty when it comes to undernutrition and under-ve mortality.The urban experience is all too oten one o poverty andexclusion. About one third o the world’s urban popula-tion lives in slum conditions, and in Arica that proportionis greater than 60 per cent. Some 1.4 billion people will live
   ©   U   N   I   C   E   F   /   N   Y   H   Q   2   0   0   6  -   1   7   6   8   /   M   i  c   h  a  e   l   K  a  m   b  e  r
A boy stands on railroad tracks in Kibera, a slum area o Nairobi, Kenya, as fressmoulder in the background. Over a quarter o the city’s population lives in Kibera.The train does not stop there.

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