As 2011 draws to a close, we offer some stunning reminders of the harsh conditions, inequities and challenges that children around the world must bear. Violence from Ivory Coast to Yemen uprooted children and turned classrooms into garrisons. Environmental catastrophes took lives and livelihoods from Pakistan to Japan. Poverty stunts young lives from Moldova to Central African Republic. In all of these places, UNICEF is on the ground working with partners to strengthen community networks that can help bring the fundamental protection, nutrition, health and education to the child facing the worst possible odds.
This photo essay depicts a cruel side of childhood -- but it is important to remember that UNICEF's mission is so much more serious than simply bringing a smile to a child's face. We hope that these images help you, our supporters, see the human face behind our firm belief in ZERO. In everything UNICEF does, the most vulnerable children and countries in greatest need are to be given the highest priority.
By focusing on equity - aiding 'without discrimination because of race, creed, nationality, status or political belief' - we can and will reach a day when no child dies of a cause we know how to prevent.