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UNICEF Innocenti's complete catalogue of research and reports
Life in Lockdown: Child and adolescent mental health and well-being in the time of COVID-19
SPOTLIGHT

Life in Lockdown: Child and adolescent mental health and well-being in the time of COVID-19

COVID-19 lockdowns have significantly disrupted the daily lives of children and adolescents, with increased time at home, online learning and limited physical social interaction. This report seeks to understand the immediate effects on their mental health. Covering more than 130,000 children and adolescents across 22 countries, the evidence shows increased stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms, as well as increased alcohol and substance use, and  externalizing behavioural problems. Children and adolescents also reported positive coping strategies, resilience, social connectedness through digital media, more family time, and relief from academic stress. Factors such as demographics, relationships and pre-existing conditions are critical. To ensure children and adolescents are supported, the report recommends building the evidence on the longer-term impact of the pandemic on child and adolescent mental health in low- and middle-income countries, including vulnerable populations. To ensure children and adolescents are supported, the report recommends building the evidence on the longer-term impact of the pandemic on child and adolescent mental health in low- and middle-income countries, including vulnerable populations.
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COVID-19: Missing More Than a Classroom. The impact of school closures on children’s nutrition
Blog Blog

COVID-19: Missing More Than a Classroom. The impact of school closures on children’s nutrition

In 2019, 135 million people in 55 countries were in food crises or worse, and 2 billion people did not have regular access to safe, nutritious and sufficient food. COVID-19 has exacerbated these hardships and may result in an additional 121 million people facing acute food insecurity by the end of 2020. Further, since the beginning of the pandemic, an estimated 1.6 billion learners in 199 countries worldwide were affected by school closures, with nearly 370 million children not receiving a school meal in 150 countries. The paper presents the evidence on the potential negative short-term and long-term effects of school meal scheme disruption during Covid-19 globally. It shows how vulnerable the children participating in these schemes are, how coping and mitigation measures are often only short-term solutions, and how prioritizing school re-opening is critical. For instance, it highlights how girls are at greater risk of not being in school or of being taken out of school early, which may lead to poor nutrition and health for themselves and their children. However, well-designed school feeding programmes have been shown to enable catch-up from early growth failure and other negative shocks. As such, once schools re-open, school meal schemes can help address the deprivation that children have experienced during the closures and provide an incentive for parents to send and keep their children, especially girls, in school.
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Law Reform and the Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
Law Reform and the Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
Published: 2008 Innocenti Publications
The study reviews the legislation concerning the rights of children adopted by 52 States Parties since the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. With the goal of providing an overview of the scope and content of new legislation adopted since 1989, the report covers 18 of the general principles and rights contained in the Convention. Three subjects that deserve further investigation are identified: the process of law reform, its place as part of a broad child rights strategy, and the actual impact of legislation of this kind on children.
South Asia in Action: Preventing and responding to child trafficking. Child rights-based programme practices
South Asia in Action: Preventing and responding to child trafficking. Child rights-based programme practices
Published: 2008 Innocenti Insights
This publication acknowledges the adoption of many international standards and the promotion of regional agreements. At the same time, legislation against trafficking is often considered within the broader context of criminalizing prostitution, addressing organized crime and controlling migration. Although these are important issues, a focus only on these perspectives fails to adequately address the full complexity and dynamics of human trafficking, and fails to give distinct consideration to child trafficking. Existing laws therefore need to be amended and new laws enacted to fully conform with international standards.
South Asia in Action: Preventing and responding to child trafficking. Summary report
South Asia in Action: Preventing and responding to child trafficking. Summary report
Published: 2008 Innocenti Insights
This publication acknowledges the adoption of many international standards and the promotion of regional agreements. At the same time, legislation against trafficking is often considered within the broader context of criminalizing prostitution, addressing organized crime and controlling migration. Although these are important issues, a focus only on these perspectives fails to adequately address the full complexity and dynamics of human trafficking, and fails to give distinct consideration to child trafficking. Existing laws therefore need to be amended and new laws enacted to fully conform with international standards.
Independent Children, Inconsistent Adults: International child migration and the legal framework
Independent Children, Inconsistent Adults: International child migration and the legal framework

AUTHOR(S)
Jacqueline Bhabha

Published: 2008 Innocenti Discussion Papers
Like adults, children migrate across borders for different reasons and in varying circumstances; and they face legal consequences as a result of their migration. Two of these consequences are common to all child migrants and have far-reaching implications: the child migrants become non-citizens or aliens once they cross a border, and they face a new social environment once they leave home. The existing legal framework does not directly address either of these consequences. Domestic child protection law, which addresses the problems facing children without satisfactory homes, does not often cover issues of foreign citizenship, including the risk of deportation and lack of entitlement to social benefits that non-citizen children can face. And migration law, which establishes the parameters of lawful status for recognized categories of migrant, does not deal with the needs and circumstances of most children who travel independently of their families. However, international law has long recognized the distinctive needs of some groups of child migrants. In the Declaration on the Rights of the Child, adopted by the League of Nations in 1924, the first ever international child rights declaration, two of the five principles articulated define rights relevant to child migrants: (1) the primacy of the child’s right to relief in times of distress (a precursor to attention to the special needs of refugee children) and (2) the imperative of protection for exploited children (prefiguring concern with child trafficking). More recent regional and domestic legislation regulating immigration has included provisions promoting family unity and by implication the migration of children with or to join their adult relatives. A broader engagement with the many other aspects of child migration however has been absent. There is no single piece of international or regional legislation that systematically and comprehensively addresses the issue. As a result the body of relevant legislation, though quite extensive and diverse, has an impact on child migrants which is inconsistent and incomplete.
Réforme législative et application de la Convention relative aux droits de l'enfant
Réforme législative et application de la Convention relative aux droits de l'enfant
Published: 2008 Innocenti Publications
Cette étude sur la réforme législative en matière de droits des enfants fait partie d’une plus ample initiative commencée par le Centre de recherche Innocenti en 2004 sur les Mesures d'application générales de la Convention relative aux droits de l'enfant. L'étude est conçue pour fournir une vue d’ensemble de l'action accomplie par chaque Etat partie à la Convention pour promouvoir l’application des 'mesures générales' don’t l'importance a été soulignée par le Comité des droits de l’enfant.
Las reformas legales y la implementación de la Convención sobre los derechos del niño
Las reformas legales y la implementación de la Convención sobre los derechos del niño
Published: 2008 Innocenti Publications
El presente estudio sobre la reforma legal en relación con los derechos del niño forma parte de una iniciativa de mayor envergadura, iniciada por el Centro de Investigaciones Innocenti de UNICEF en 2004, centrada en las Medidas Generales de Aplicación de la Convención sobre los Derechos del Niño. El propósito del estudio es brindar un panorama de la medida en que los Estados Partes de la Convención han facilitado la implementación de las "medidas generales", cuya importancia ha sido señalada por el Comité sobre los Derechos del Niño en la Observación General N° 5, aprobada en 2005.
Реформа законодательства и осуществление Конвенции о правах ребенка
Реформа законодательства и осуществление Конвенции о правах ребенка
Published: 2008 Innocenti Publications
В настоящем исследовании анализируется законодательство о правах детей, принятое 52-мя государствами-участниками с момента принятия Конвенции о правах ребенка (КПР или 'Конвенция'), а также такие вопросы как оговорки и статус КПР во внутригосуда-рственном праве.
Climate Change and Children: A human security challenge. Policy review paper
Climate Change and Children: A human security challenge. Policy review paper
Published: 2008 Innocenti Publications
The study reviews the implications of climate change for children and future generations, drawing on relevant experiences in different sectors and countries of promoting child rights and well-being. It traces in considerable detail the pathways through which shifts in temperature and precipitation patterns create serious additional barriers to the achievement of the child survival, development and protection goals embraced by the international community. The role of children as vital participants and agents of change emerges as a key theme.
Young People’s Voices on Child Trafficking: Experiences from South Eastern Europe
Young People’s Voices on Child Trafficking: Experiences from South Eastern Europe

AUTHOR(S)
Mike Dottridge

Published: 2008 Innocenti Working Papers
Mindful of the important contribution that young people can make to our understanding of the issues that concern them, in 2005 and 2006 UNICEF arranged for children and young people who had been trafficked while under 18 years of age, to be interviewed in their home countries. Interviews were conducted in Albania, Kosovo, Moldova and Romania. Each of the children and young people described their lives before recruitment, their experiences during exploitation, and how they got away from the traffickers. They also spoke of rebuilding their lives once they were free. The interviews formed part of a broader assessment of strategies to counter child trafficking in the region.
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Survey methods
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Survey methods
Published: 2007 Innocenti Working Papers
Special Series on Child Injury no.2

This paper presents a more detailed description of the survey methodology for technical specialists interested in understanding the major differences between the surveys and the methods previously used to estimate child deaths. A detailed description is provided for survey governance, sampling design, survey instruments, the classification scheme for mortality and morbidity measured in the surveys, the fieldwork procedure, the analytic framework, weighting and adjustments, and survey costs. Following this, a number of methodological lessons are addressed, such as: the need to count all children and not only those under five years of age; the need to count all clearly identifiable causes of death in those same groups; the need to count morbidity as well as mortality; and the need to count the deaths in the community where they occur to avoid the various biases associated with facility-based counting. A number of examples from the surveys are shown to illuminate the issues so that they are clear to non-technical readers.
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Survey results and evidence
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Survey results and evidence
Published: 2007 Innocenti Working Papers
Special Series on Child Injury no.3

This paper presents a detailed description of the survey results which were introduced in the Overview Paper. Detailed results are presented first for proportional mortality in children by age group for a population-weighted composite of the surveys, and then for the individual surveys. Following this, detailed results are presented for fatal injury by national or sub-national area, region (urban/rural), and gender for the 0-17 age group. After this the types of fatal injury that occur in the different stages of childhood are presented. The second part of the paper presents both fatal and nonfatal injury by type of injury for the composite of the surveys as well as the individual surveys themselves. The results show that the leading causes of nonfatal injury differ from those of fatal injury, and the greatest burden is caused by the more serious categories of nonfatal injury. Finally, the ratio of the two leading causes of fatal injury in children, drowning and road accidents, are presented for each of the surveys. Drowning is shown to be the leading cause of fatal childhood injury in each survey. The paper concludes with a discussion of the major issues highlighted by the results of the surveys.
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Policy and programme implications
Child Mortality and Injury in Asia: Policy and programme implications
Published: 2007 Innocenti Working Papers
Special Series on Child Injury no.4

This paper presents a summary of the findings of the national and sub-national surveys and discusses the implications of the results on child health policy and programmes.The principal finding is that injury has generally been unrecognized as a leading cause of child death. This is largely because the previous estimates of child mortality causality were unable to include injury due to technical issues. The surveys provide convincing evidence that injury is a leading cause of child death after infancy and the types of injury vary with the age group of the child. Similar convincing evidence shows that it is a leading cause of serious morbidity and permanent disability in children The implications discussed are 1) the need to develop an effective measure of child mortality that includes all ages of childhood; 2) prevention of mortality and serious morbidity from injury in children will require a life-cycle approach; 3) continued progress on child survival programming in children under five years of age will require injury reductions; 4) that drowning is the single injury cause responsible for about half of all injury deaths and targeting it for reduction would be an efficient strategy; and 5) there are efficient strategies for targeting other sub-types of child injury as well.
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Learning at a Distance: Children’s remote learning experiences in Italy during the COVID-19 pandemic
Publication Publication

Learning at a Distance: Children’s remote learning experiences in Italy during the COVID-19 pandemic

Italy was the first country in Europe to implement a nationwide lockdown. Children and their families lived in nearly complete isolation for almost two months. Students missed 65 days of school compared to an average of 27 missed days among high-income countries worldwide. This prolonged break is of concern, as even short breaks in schooling can cause significant loss of learning for children and lead to educational inequalities over time. At least 3 million Italian students may not have been reached by remote learning due to a lack of internet connectivity or devices at home. This report explores children’s and parents’ experiences of remote learning during the lockdown in Italy, drawing on data collected from 11 European countries (and coordinated by the European Commission’s Joint Research Center). It explores how children's access and use of digital technologies changed during the pandemic; highlights how existing inequalities might undermine remote learning opportunities, even among those with internet access; and provides insights on how to support children’s remote learning in the future. *** L'Italia e’ stata il primo paese in Europa ad aver applicato la misura del lockdown su tutto il territorio. I bambini e le loro famiglie hanno vissuto in quasi completo isolamento per circa due mesi. Gli studenti hanno perduto 65 giorni di scuola rispetto ad una media di 27 negli altri paesi ad alto reddito del mondo. Questa interruzione prolungata rappresenta motivo di preoccupazione, in quanto persino interruzioni piu’ brevi nella didattica possono causare significative perdite nel livello di istruzione dei ragazzi e portare col tempo a diseguaglianze educative. Almeno 3 milioni di studenti in Italia non sono stati coinvolti nella didattica a distanza a causa d una mancanza di connessione ad internet o di dispositivi adeguati a casa. Questo rapporto analizza l’esperienza della didattica a distanza di ragazzi e genitori in Italia durante il lockdown, sulla base dei dati raccolti in 11 paesi europei (e coordinati dal Centro comune di ricerca della Commissione Europea). Studia il cambiamento nell’accesso e nell’uso delle tecnologie digitali dei bambini e ragazzi durante la pandemia; mette in evidenza come le diseguaglianze esistenti possano diminuire le opportunità offerte dalla didattica a distanza, anche tra coloro che hanno accesso ad internet; e fornisce approfondimenti su come sostenere la didattica a distanza di bambini e ragazzi in futuro.
Time to Teach: Teacher attendance and time on task in Eastern and Southern Africa
Publication Publication

Time to Teach: Teacher attendance and time on task in Eastern and Southern Africa

There is a learning crisis. Fifty-three per cent of children in low- and middle-income countries are in ‘learning poverty’, i.e. they cannot read and understand a simple text by the end of primary school age. In sub- Saharan Africa, the learning poverty rate is 87 per cent overall, and ranges from 40 per cent to as high as 99 per cent in the 21 countries with available data. Teachers attending lessons and spending quality time on task is a critical prerequisite to learning. However, in sub-Saharan Africa, teacher absenteeism ranges from 15 to 45 per cent. Teacher absenteeism and reduced time on task wastes valuable financial resources, short-changes students and is one of the most cumbersome obstacles on the path toward the education Sustainable Development Goal and to the related vision of the new UNICEF education strategy: Every Child Learns. Whilst the stark numbers are available to study, and despite teacher absenteeism being a foremost challenge for education systems in Africa, the evidence base on how policies and practices can influence teacher attendance remains scant. Time to Teach (TTT) is a research initiative that looks at primary school teacher attendance in eight countries and territories in the Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) region: the Comoros; Kenya; Rwanda, Puntland, State of Somalia; South Sudan; the United Republic of Tanzania, mainland; the United Republic of Tanzania, Zanzibar; and Uganda. Its primary objective is to identify factors affecting the various forms of teacher attendance, which include being at school, being punctual, being in the classroom, and teaching when in the classroom, and use this evidence to inform the design and implementation of teacher policies.

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