When there’s good news from UNICEF, the world stops and listens. The United Nations Children’s Fund has its headquarters in New York City. Its goal is to provide long-term humanitarian and developmental assistance to children and mothers in developing countries. It helps over 190 countries world-wide.
UNICEF was created in 1946 by the UN General Assembly. It was awareed the Nobel Peace Prize in 1965.
Nearly half as many children under 5 are dying today compared to two decades ago, with 90 million deaths prevented since 1990, according to new estimates published by UNICEF and other international agencies.
UNICEF estimate that in 2012, 6.6 million children died before the age of 5, or 18,000 deaths per day. While these numbers are still unacceptably high, they are a huge improvement from 1990, when 12.6 million children died before celebrating their fifth birthdays.
What’s changed over the last two decades? Chalk it up to cheaper and better treatments, innovations in health care delivery and sustained political commitment toward improving child survival, UNICEF
The world’s poorest countries have also defied expectations by making the biggest strides in improving child survival. Bangladesh, Nepal and Malawi, for example, have slashed their under-5 mortality rates by two-thirds or more since 1990 — thus achieving one of the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight international targets established in 2000.