UNICEF's story in 2012: unrelenting efforts for world's most vulnerable childrenListen /
Despite financial concerns in much of the world and complex emergencies affecting children in nearly 80 countries in 2012, global progress was still made for millions of children last year, according to UNICEF's 2012 Annual Report.
The report notes that emergencies dominated headlines in 2012 and the organization and its partners responded to 286 humanitarian situations in 79 countries.
Life-saving support provided through UNICEF included:
Therapeutic feeding programmes for more than 2.1 million severely malnourished children under the age of five; Measles vaccination for nearly 44 million children up to the age of 15; Access to safe water for 18.8 million people; More than 3.5 million children being able to access education.
The report also cites the horrific conflict in Syria which demanded a special effort. UNICEF helped provide access to uninterrupted education for nearly 80,000 children affected by the conflict, supported measles vaccination for more than 1.4 million children and provided psychosocial care for an estimated 47,000 children. UNICEF also delivered safe water in refugee camps and to host communities, benefitting more than 100,000 people.
UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake noted that "As the Millennium Development Goals deadline approaches, we have cause to celebrate declining poverty rates, the near eradication of polio, increased immunizations, more girls attending school, improved access to clean water and nutrition, and more children surviving and thriving beyond their fifth birthdays than ever before". But he cautioned " these results are no excuse for rest".
Donn Bobb, United Nations.