Lesson 12 : Role of International Agencies in Combating Malnutrition
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
The United Nations Children’s fund was created by the United Nations General assembly on December 11, 1946, to provide emergency food and health care to children in countries that had been devasted by world war II in 1953. The headquarter is present in New York city. UNICEF provides long term humanitarian and developmental assistance to children and mothers in developing countries.
UNICEF is mandated by the UN General assembly to advocate the protection of children’s rights, to help need their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential. UNICEF insists that the survival, protection and development of children are universal imperatives.
UNICEF works in more than 160 countries, areas and territories on solutions to the problems plagueing poor children and their families and on ways to realize their rights. It encourages the care to offer the best possible start in life, helping prevent childhood illness and death, making pregnancy and child birth safe.
UNICEF works towards comprehensive child health care in the earliest years including the antenatal period before birth.
Basic Education and Gender Equality: To promote fund and facilitates for universal primary education for all.
AIDS and Children: UNICEF also works via advocacy and community outreach to help governments, communities and families support children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. UNICEF also support programmes that help prevent mother-to child transmission of HIV/AIDS.
Child Protection: Focus areas include raising government awareness of child protection rights and situation analysis as well as promoting laws that punish child exploiters working through advocacy and the local offices worldwide. UNICEF helps strengthen the resources of schools communities and families to care for marginalized children, including those orphaned by HIV/AIDS.
Nutrition’s Health Programmes:
It has maintained a vigorous programme of financial assistance to maternal and child health problems in under developed areas.
Distribution of supplementary food to children has been accompanied increasingly by educational measures. Its activities cover immunization, Vitamin A supplementation, Fe Supplementation and education programmes.