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Important New Resources to Accelerate Progress Toward SDGs with a Focus on Children

Children, largely from Jordan's ethnic Dom Community, in a UNICEF-supported Makani where they receive integrated learning, child protection and youth services.

(27 February 2020) In September last year, the UN Secretary General announced a global call for a Decade of Action to deliver the SDGs by 2030. This appeal to governments, the UN system and all development partners, sets out a need for scaled up ambition and urgent action for the goals. UNICEF is committed to do its part, starting with efforts to improve SDG awareness, inspire action and hold leaders to account on the commitments made in the goals.

New Resources on SDGs and Children

To that end, UNICEF has produced a newly launched SDG portal that outlines why the SDGs matter for children and why child rights matter in achieving the SDGs. All goals are relevant to children and every child deserves a future where the SDGs are met.

Additional pages include “How to Achieve the SDGs For and With Children” outlining our partnerships and resources for educating, engaging and empowering children and young people on the SDGs as well as “Resources on the Sustainable Development Goals,” providing key resources and research on the SDGs and child rights.

We trust these pages will be a helpful resource as UNICEF colleagues and offices continue to support governments and partners in their SDG implementation, monitoring and review activities. This year, fifty governments are reporting SDG plans and progress in July, offering an opportunity to scale commitments to child rights in the context of SDG implementation. For additional guidance and tools to advocate with your government counterparts in the design of their Voluntary National Review (VNR), kindly see specific resources here.

Monitoring Progress in All Countries

Achieving universal health coverage is at the core of Sustainable Development Goal 3 – ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for all at all ages. The Countdown to 2030 initiative regularly tracks progress in the countries experiencing the highest burdens of maternal and child mortality. Its 2017 report highlights reductions in maternal and child mortality over the past two decades, but greater efforts are needed to achieve the 2030 goals.

Countdown’s updated 2019 country profiles and dashboards include the latest data available for 139 countries. These data show whether coverage for essential interventions in a given country is accelerating, stagnating, or even reversing. Each dashboard includes data on: demographics, nutrition, coverage for key reproductive, maternal, newborn, adolescent and child health interventions, equity, and policy, systems and financial flows.

Access Country Data Dashboards

Key Messages

  • Despite substantial progress in reducing maternal, newborn, and child mortality worldwide, inequities persist. Data show countries in sub-Saharan Africa are lagging most behind.
  • Coverage of health interventions is higher for those that are well resourced, can take place at planned times (such as preventive services), and do not depend on a functioning healthcare system.
  • The indicators for monitoring progress need to be revised to include proven interventions for older children, adolescents, and adult women.
  • Further dis-aggregation of intervention coverage by equity measures is important to better understand who is being left behind.