ve in ▓poverty, UNICEF reportsO

sis covering 11 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, said that these children are deprived of the minimum requirements in two or more of the most basic life necessities including basic education

, decent housing, nutritious food, quality health care, safe water, sanitation a▓nd access to information."Child pov▓erty is about so much more than family inco▓me -- it's about access to quality educ▓ation, healthcare, a home and safe water," Geert Cappe▓laere, the UNICEF regional director for the Middle East and North Africa (MEN

ne in four chi

image 01

A), said at a regional co▓nference on child poverty held in Rabat, Morocco."When children are deprived of the basics, they are at risk of getting trapped in a vicious cyc▓le of poverty," the UNICEF official sai


d.Country level information on child povert▓y has been aggregated for the first time in the MENA regi

on. While important progress has been made in most countr▓ies to reduce poverty, the number of chil

in Middle East,

image 02

North Afri

image 3

dren living in poverty continues to be high. Countries affected by conflict are seeing a rapid regressi▓on of gains made in past decades.The ▓UNICEF study's key

findings include:-- Lack of education was found to be one of the key drivers o▓f inequality and poverty for children. Children who live▓ in households that are headed by an uneducated family member are twice as likely to▓ live in poverty. One quarter of children aged 5 to 17 are not enrolled in school or have fall▓en two grades behind.-- Almost half of all children live in inadequate housing with poor flooring and overcrowding.-- Almost half of all children are not fully immunized or▓ were born to mothers who did not get en▓ough antenatal care or birth assistance.-▓- One in five children are f

orced to walk more t▓han 30 minutes to fetch water or use▓ unsafe drinking water. More than one third of children live in homes with no tap water.Major challenges stand i▓n the way of measuring the impact of poverty on children▓ and taking collective action toward

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ca live in pover

image 04

s poverty alleviation. To start with, countries in▓ the region don't consistently collect data on poverty while widespread and ongoing violence and displacement make it extremely difficu▓lt to get data from conflict-affected countries.A▓bsence of a full understanding of children's reality, in

cluding the most marginalised or invisible, risks that existing policies and▓ actions fall short from addressing child poverty▓ effectively."The return on investing in the most vulnerable children now is a ▓peaceful and prosperous region in the future," Cappelaere said. "It takes a combinatio

ty, UNICEF reports05-1

n of true leadership and courageous public and private investment from governments, civil society, private sector, individuals and the international c

ldren in the

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