The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) provides developmental assistance to children and their families by focusing on the following areas: Child Survival and Development, Basic Education and Gender Equality, HIV/AIDS, Child Protection and Policy Advocacy and Partnerships.
Since the late 1980's, World Scouting and UNICEF have collaborated on a multitude of projects specialising in child development all over the globe. The mutual interest in the subject was formalised with a special agreement of cooperation on Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) in 1994 and a Memorandum of Understanding in 2005 covering joint initiatives surrounding the centenary of Scouting and beyond. Click here to download the MoU.
The World Scouting-UNICEF partnership has a long history of joint projects, several of them covering the health and welfare of children and youth. Often, the Scouts lead the social mobilisation of these joint initiatives, acting as advocates to parents and the community at large, encouraging them to participate in a specific health and awareness interventions. UNICEF, on the other hand, provides the technical and logistical support. Some examples of how the two organisations work together can be found in the long running child immunization campaign in Africa and the clean water and sanitation project in Sudan and Africa from 1990-2002. Scouting has partnered with UNICEF in several prominent projects and initiatives at regional, national and local levels drawing references from the global MoU.
UNICEF’s chief of Child Protection, Dr. Susan Bissell, delivered the keynote address at the International Conference on Keeping Children Safe From Harm organised jointly by World and Swedish Scouting at the 22nd World Scout Jamboree in Sweden (2011). During her address, Dr. Bissell appreciated World Scouting’s role in pioneering changes in social behaviour globally to ensure the full protection of children and youth. She was particularly impressed with the society wide engagement process followed by Scouting, which is based on the understanding that the protection of children should extend to all spheres of the life and activities of the child. In recent years, Scouting has been approached by several youth and children based organisations to extend Scouting’s child and youth protection programmes under ‘Keeping Scouts Safe From Harm’ beyond Scouting.
Visit the UNICEF website.