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New York, New York, UNICEF, 2007 Dec.  p.Five years after the Special Session, more than 120 countries and territories have prepared reports on their efforts to meet the goals of 'A World Fit for Children' (WFFC). Most have developed these in parallel with reports on the Millennium Development Goals, carrying out two complementary exercises. Reports on the Millennium Development Goals highlight progress in poverty reduction and the principal social indicators, while the World Fit for Children reports go into greater detail on some of the same issues, such as education and child survival. But they also extend their coverage to child protection, which is less easy to track with numerical indicators. The purpose of this document is to assemble some of the information contained in these reports, along with the latest global data - looking at what has been done and what remains to be done. It is therefore organized around the four priority areas identified in A World Fit for Children, discussing each within the overall framework of the Millennium Development Goals. To appreciate the achievements for children over the past two decades, it is also useful to reflect briefly on how their world has changed. Children born in 1989, the year when the Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted, are now on the brink of adulthood. They have lived through a remarkable period of social, political and economic transformation. (excerpt)
Education Sector Global HIV and AIDS Readiness Survey, 2004: policy implications for education and development. An integration of perspectives from ministries of education and civil society organizations.
Paris, France, UNESCO, 2006. 64 p.This report documents the outcomes of the first international survey of education sector readiness to manage and mitigate the impact of HIV and AIDS. Ministries of education (MoEs) in 71 countries and civil society organizations in 18 countries were interviewed, in person and electronically, in separate research processes. Both surveys were conducted in 2004 on behalf of the UNAIDS Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) on Education. The Global Readiness Survey (GRS) of 71 MoEs was conducted by the Mobile Task Team (MTT) on the Impact of HIV and AIDS on Education, and the Civil Society Survey (CSS) of 18 civil society country interactions was conducted by the Global Campaign for Education (GCE). It should be noted that the GRS research process involved the completion of the questionnaire by an internal committee of senior MoE officials convened for this purpose, independent of an external researcher. Thus the process generated what might be described as 'self-reported information' rather than data in a conventional sense; while this may have its limitations, it nevertheless provides an important insight into the internal perceptions and assumptions of the MoEs involved. (excerpt)
New York, New York, UNICEF, 2005 Apr.  p.The past decade has seen UNICEF take the very best practices from its long and productive history and apply them in the service of today's children who live in a world previously unimagined. A complex world marked by intractable poverty, pervasive political instability, serial conflicts, HIV and AIDS. A world where there are few, if any, single causes, easy solutions or quick fixes. At $1.7 billion in 2004, UNICEF's income almost doubled in 10 years. The money, all voluntary contributions, was invested in programmes that prioritized early childhood, immunization, girls' education, improved protection and HIV and AIDS. Global progress on many fronts has been phenomenal: Mortality rates for children under five have dropped by around 15 per cent since 1990; Deaths from diarrhoea, one of the major killers of children under five, have been cut in half since 1990; Polio, once a deadly killer, is nearly eradicated; Measles deaths dropped by nearly 40 per cent; More children are in school than ever before; National laws and policies to better protect children have been enacted in dozens of countries. And, perhaps most profoundly of all, nearly every country in the world has ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child. (excerpt)
Finance and Development. 2005 Sep; 42(3): p..With just ten years to go before reaching the international community’s self-imposed deadline for achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)— a set of eight objectives incorporating targets for reducing poverty and other sources of human deprivation and promoting sustainable development— progress remains very uneven. China and India, the two countries with the most poor people, have grown rapidly over the past few years. As a result, East Asia has already achieved the goal of halving poverty by 2015, and South Asia is on target. Most other developing regions are also making steady progress. The exception is sub-Saharan Africa, where most countries are off track. Poverty actually increased in the region during 1990–2001. (excerpt)
Finance and Development. 2005 Jun; 42(2): p..But while the international community agrees that something needs to be done, how best to go about it remains the subject of vigorous debate. No one questions that human capital—in the form of better health status and higher levels of educational attainment—is a major building block for sustaining the productivity growth that would, in turn, spur broad-based economic growth in developing countries. But inefficiencies in the public provision of these services—due, for instance, to corruption or a lack of skilled workers—have led some to question whether just increasing public spending is the best route, especially given the role of other factors (such as income per capita) in determining social indicators. For that reason, we undertook a study to try to help policymakers evaluate the effects of different policies on social indicators and growth. This article examines our results, which show that while higher spending on health and education is worthwhile, poor governance and macroeconomic instability may offset the positive impact of social spending on growth and human development. But first it is helpful to review what past research has taught us. (excerpt)
Population 2005. 2002 Mar-Apr; 4(1):2.More than 70 nongovernmental organizations have endorsed a declaration in support of a global event on population and development in 2005, which was prepared by the executive board of Population 2005 in February 2002. The statement was presented to the United Nations Commission on Population and Development at its 35th session in New York in April. The declaration reads as follows: In its Program of Action, the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) held in Cairo in 1994 set three sets of specific goals for: 1) provision of family planning and other reproductive health services 2) reduction of infant, child and maternal mortality, and 3) universal access to primary education, with particular attention to the girl child. (excerpt)
Tropical Medicine and International Health. 2005 Apr; 10(4):300-304.In scaling up antiretroviral treatment (ART), financing is fast becoming less of a constraint than the human resources to ensure the implementation of the programmes. In the countries hardest affected by the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) pandemic, AIDS increases workloads, professional frustration and burn-out. It affects health workers also directly, contributing to rising sick leave and attrition rates. This burden is shouldered by a health workforce weakened already by chronic deficiencies in training, distribution and retention. In these countries, health workforce issues can no longer be analysed from the traditional perspective of human resource development, but should start from the position that entire societies are in a process of social involution of a scale unprecedented in human history. Strategies that proved to be effective and correct in past conditions need be reviewed, particularly in the domains of human resource management and policy-making, education and international aid. True paradigm shifts are thus required, without which the fundamental changes required to effectively strengthen the health workforce are unlikely to be initiated. (author's)
IAEN: Current Issues in the Economics of HIV / AIDS. AIDS and education, April 25, 2003. Transcript.
[Palo Alto, California], Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 2003. 43 p.Each country with a slightly different focus on the piece of research and in Malawi, the piece I'm going to talk about today is really embedded in a much larger study, a larger longitudinal study. But because of some of the data that we're finding in our pupils and teachers in the conditions of AIDS in Malawi, we decided that we should look a little bit further into what the impact is on the classroom and specifically on learning, so that's going to be the focus of my remarks and I hope really it stimulates some discussion. We're at the beginning of looking at this issue more systematically in the classroom, so I hope I don't fall into the category that Steve referred to earlier as maybe I should have come next year instead of this year. (excerpt)
Manila, Philippines, WHO, Regional Office for the Western Pacific, 2002. 46 p.This document seeks to reaffirm the commitment of the WHO Western Pacific Region to the core values and principles of health promotion as articulated in the Ottawa Charter. It should also stimulate critical thinking on how health promotion can be made more relevant to the complex and dynamic environment of the 21st Century. The document takes a closer look at the transformation of traditional lifestyles and cultures against the backdrop of globalization and revisits current approaches to health promotion. It emphasizes the need to build on the successes of the past. It also challenges stakeholders to work with other sectors to influence individual and collective actions that will create an environment supportive of healthy choices in all places, at all stages of the life course. (excerpt)
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO]. Department of Reproductive Health and Research, 2001. 178 p. (Occasional Paper No. 5)This report considers how human rights laws can be applied to relieve the estimated 1,400 deaths world-wide that occur every day, an annual mortality rate of 515,000, that women suffer because they are pregnant. Human rights principles have long been established in national constitutional and other laws and in regional and international human rights treaties to which nations voluntarily commit themselves. The intention of the report is to facilitate initiatives by governmental agencies, nongovernmental groups and, for instance, international organizations to foster compliance with human rights in order to protect, respect and fulfill women’s rights to safe motherhood. The report outlines how the dimensions of unsafe motherhood can be measured and comprehended, and how causes can be identified by reference to medical, health system and socio-legal factors. It introduces human rights laws by identifying their sources and governmental obligations to implement them, and explains a range of specific human rights that can be applied to advance safe motherhood. The rights are shown to interact with each other, and for purposes of discussion, they are clustered in the following ways: rights to life, survival and security; rights relating to maternity and health; rights to nondiscrimination and due respect for difference; and rights to information and education relevant to women’s health protection during pregnancy and childbirth. The setting of performance standards for monitoring compliance with rights relevant to reproductive health, and availability and use of obstetric services are addressed. In conclusion, the report considers several strategies to encourage professional, institutional and governmental implementation of the various human rights in national and international laws relevant to reduction of unsafe motherhood, and to enable women to go through pregnancy and childbirth safely. (excerpt)
Bangkok, Thailand, United Nations Development Programme [UNDP], 2004.  p. (Thematic MDG Report)Thailand has shown that a well-funded, politically-supported and shrewdly-implemented response can change the course of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. After peaking at 143,000 in 1991, the annual number of new HIV infections has fallen to about 19,000 in 2003 – making Thailand one of a handful of countries to have reversed a serious HIV/AIDS epidemic. The national adult HIV prevalence continues to edge lower, with the latest estimates pegging it at a little over 1.5 percent at the end of 2003. This astounding achievement translates into millions of lives saved. This report is a powerful account of how Thailand has managed to achieve Millennium Development Goal 6 – to halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015 – well in advance of schedule, and what now needs to be done to sustain this extraordinary achievement. Thailand’s feat raises tantalizing questions. How did it make such inroads against the HIV/AIDS epidemic? What lessons does it hold for other countries in the region and beyond? Is Thailand’s current response keeping pace with the changing epidemic? What are the strategic priorities for the future to avoid a resurgence? This publication explores these questions by looking back – and ahead – at Thailand’s confrontation with one of the deadliest diseases the world has known. (excerpt)
Paris, France, UNESCO, 2004. 30 p.This paper uses a framework for quality education developed by UNESCO’s Education Sector, Division for the Promotion of Quality Education (ED/PEQ) to show how education systems can and must change in their analysis and conduct in relation to HIV/AIDS. It summarises the 10 dimensions of the framework, considers how HIV/AIDS manifests itself in relation to these quality dimensions and summarises some practical applications of how education has responded and can respond to the pandemic from a quality perspective. A more detailed annex to the paper provides evidence on the manifestations of the pandemic on education systems, and how systems have responded in practical ways. Some general conclusions are drawn and a final section promotes some practical and strategic actions in support of quality education that reflects and responds to HIV/AIDS. The paper was developed for the UNAIDS Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) on HIV and Education. The IATT is convened by UNESCO and includes as members the UN co-sponsoring agencies of UNAIDS, bi-lateral and private donors, and NGOs. The IATT focuses on mobilising commitment to prevention education, acting as a catalyst for the exchange of information about what is known, what is available, and what still needs to be known about how education can be most effective in mitigating the effects of the HIV/AIDS crisis. It seeks to examine and strengthen existing tools for monitoring and evaluating education systems’ responses to the crisis, identify weaknesses in these responses and overcome these weaknesses, analyse what is known to strengthen information and materials exchange, and stimulate research and evidence-based policy-making. (excerpt)
Issue paper: Review and assessment of HIV / AIDS strategies that explicitly include attention to rights. Impact mitigation.
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 2004. Prepared for the 4th Meeting of the UNAIDS Global Reference Group on HIV / AIDS and Human Rights, August 23-25, 2004. 4 p.This issue paper examines human rights based approaches explicitly defined as such by organizations addressing impact mitigation policy and programmatic efforts. Given the diversity of definitions of rights based approaches, consideration is given to how rights are conceptualized, and the explicit attention to rights in these policy and program efforts. Commonalities and differences should be considered between the various approaches to determine the evidence that exists of the value of paying attention to rights in these strategies, as well as how rights based approaches to impact mitigation are articulated. While impact mitigation covers a broad range of areas, given the devastating consequences of the epidemic on the lives of children, most of the examples below will focus on children orphaned by AIDS as an example to illustrate how rights based approaches are applied at policy and programmatic levels. (excerpt)
Perspectives in Health. 2004; 9(2):2-7.The Millennium Development Goals stand out as a historic achievement amid a steady stream of resolutions and declarations emanating from the United Nations General Assembly and U.N. agencies in recent years. The millennium goals have a greater chance for realization than many previous high-minded declarations and resolutions, mainly because of the high-level political commitment to them expressed by both developed and developing countries. Moreover, the millennium goals feature clear, time-bound, and measurable targets for reducing poverty, hunger, illiteracy, disease, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women. They also set forth a pragmatic formula for cooperation between rich and poor countries that implies a global quid pro quo: financial and other support from rich countries in return for genuine efforts at sound economic and social reform by poor countries. The millennium goals are ambitious in both their scope and their call for achieving greater equity in the distribution of wealth and social well-being. This is especially relevant for poor countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, where wide disparities in economic and social indicators persist. (excerpt)
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. A young person's guide.
London, England, International Planned Parenthood Federation [IPPF], .  p.You should be given wide-ranging and easy to understand information on sexual and reproductive issues that will let you feel comfortable with yourself, your body and your sexuality. This information should enable you to make your own decisions about your sexual and reproductive health. You should be given this information without being judged or being made to feel embarrassed or guilty. Everyone has the right to receive an education. You should not be denied education simply because you are a girl, are poor or have a disability. If you become pregnant or have children you still have the right to go to school. (excerpt)
New York, New York, UNFPA, 2002.  p.Almost all United Nations global conferences in the last decade have recognized that youth unemployment is a growing problem that needs to be addressed, and that placing youth at the centre of the development agenda is a key to sustainable development. Youth unemployment, especially among girls, is linked to problems of poverty, illhealth, illiteracy. Hence, preparing young people for productivity and healthy integration into their changing societies calls for attention to their economic, health and basic social needs. The ongoing and future demands created by large young populations, particularly in terms of health, education and employment, represent major challenges and responsibilities for families, local communities, countries and international community. To meet the special needs of adolescents and youth, especially young women, the challenge is to give due regard for their own creative capacities, and to provide social, family and community support, employment opportunities, participation in political processes, and access to education, health, counselling and high quality reproductive health services. Health, including sexual and reproductive health, is an important consideration in the employability of young people. At the same time, employment can improve young people’s access to health and other social services. Thus, securing their health and rights will enhance efforts to provide young people, especially girls and women with education, employment, and life skills that will benefit them as individuals, their families and society at large. (author's)
How to bridge the gap between policies and implementation -- is effective AIDS control presently possible in sub-Saharan Africa? [editorial]
Tropical Medicine and International Health. 2003 Sep; 8(9):765-766.The leaders of sub-Saharan states must act now, and the international community must be prepared to respond effectively to save these societies from further destruction. The international response would have to include a revision of current policies in the light of experiences gained. We need a mixed approach: support for both for ‘sustainable’ strengthening of the whole system in line with health sector reforms and non-sustainable project support for specifically directed temporary efforts in line with the thinking behind the establishment of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. We owe this to the suffering people in these countries. We also owe it to taxpayers in industrialized countries who are both willing to pay and have a genuine desire to help. (excerpt)