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750,000 children at risk of being cut off from safe drinking water after increased shelling in eastern Ukraine

© UNICEF/UN052428/FilippovOn 1 February 2017, following intense fighting in Avdiivka, Dasha, 1.5 year old, is held by her mother outside a heated emergency shelter in Avdiivka. KYIV, Ukraine/GENEVA/HONG KONG, 16 June 2017 – At least 750,000 children are at imminent risk of being cut off from safe drinking water following a surge in fighting in […]

Karen, age 3, holds hands with her father Iddi Badi, age 34, outside of the school building at the Little Rock Early Childhood Development Centre in Kibera, Nairobi, Kenya, May 16, 2017.  

"This is Karen's second year. I love this school, the way they nurture and bring the children up, and the way that she learns to interact and express herself. They don't discriminate against any children here." said Iddi Badi.

The first five years of life have a profound effect on a child future ?on her health, education, wellbeing and financial success as an adult.  When parented with love, nourished and cared for in safe and stimulating environments, children develop the cognitive, emotional and behavioural skills they need to embrace opportunity and bounce back from adversity. They start life with a fair chance to grow, thrive and contribute to their communities and the world. 

But far too many children are denied the right to adequate nutrition, protection and the stimulation that comes from talk, play and responsive attention from caregivers.  These deprivations not only hold back individual children, they launch a cycle of disadvantage and inequity that can continue for generations. 

Recent advances in neuroscience pinpoint the environmental factors that can disrupt development. This neuroscience points to exciting new ways to protect vulnerable children and help them build resilience so they can survive, grow and reach their full potential. Early in life, a child develops cognitive, language and psychosocial skills, a process known as early childhood development (ECD).

Recent discoveries in neuroscience have provided a growing list of details about how a baby brain develops during this time of life. As a result, we know that a baby brain is constructed by a complex interplay of rapid neural connections that begin before birth. In a child first years, these connections occur at a once-in-a lifetime speed of 700 to 1,000 a second.  As the brain-build

More than half of young children deprived of play and early learning activities with their fathers

© UNICEF/UN066575/Ohanesian Karen, age 3, holds hands with her father Iddi Badi, age 34, outside of the school building at the Little Rock Early Childhood Development Centre in Kibera, Nairobi, Kenya, May 16, 2017 Launching as Father’s Day is celebrated on Sunday in 80 countries, the new analysis is drawn from UNICEF’s Multiple Indicator Cluster […]

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(Chinese version only) ‘Super Dads’ help children’s early development

© UNICEF/UN059766/Ose (Chinese version only) 星期日就是父親節,除了是家庭聚首慶祝的節日,更是一個好機會給每位終日忙碌的爸爸反思:你們除了是家庭支柱、丈夫,還是孩子的爸爸。陪伴子女成長,讓他們健康、快樂地渡過童年,爸爸與媽媽一樣,都有責任。 聯合國兒童基金香港委員會(UNICEF HK)指出,在幼兒期,特別是生命的首1,000天,兒童大腦急促發展。大腦神經元每秒會產生700至1,000 個新的連結,有助幼童對外接觸、學習及成長,直接影響其早期發展。這是大腦發育最活躍的時候,一生人只得一次機會。因此,父母應好好把握,透過給予兒童足夠的營養、遊戲及關愛,好好培育兒童,刺激其大腦發展,亦為他們的未來奠下重要基礎。研究更指,兒童多與父親互動,對他們的心理健康、自尊和生活滿意度都有長遠益處。 很多孩子都期望父親成為無所不能的超人,其實所謂「超人」,未必需要飛天循地,只要悉心照顧,讓子女健康成長,已是守護孩子的英雄。現時,全球有90多個國家慶祝父親節,UNICEF「超級好爸」倡議活動,邀請全球市民由即日起至父親節期間,在社交媒體上載與孩子共度美好時光的照片和影片,並加上「#EarlyMomentsMatter」響應活動。UNICEF國際親善大使碧咸、迪祖高域等亦一同支持。UNICEF HK大使黃金寶更撰寫「給天下爸爸」一信,抒發自己當爸爸近兩年的感受,以及鼓勵一眾父親把握子女早期發展良機,重視每段親自陪伴子女成長的時光,「……..新手爸爸可能未必對湊BB有太多知識,但只要努力和堅持,我們每一個都可以是『超級好爸』──我們可以支持太太餵奶、幫手分擔家務、哄他們入睡、與他們玩、與他們傾計等……..」 要做「超級好爸」,你不需要有超能力,你只需要有一顆愛護孩子和願意聆聽的心。謹願天下父親與子女生活美滿,爸爸加油! 原文刊登於2017年6月16日《星島日報》「放眼世界」「攜手為兒童」專欄

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Wong Kam-po sends a letter to all fathers

© Wong Kam-po (Chinese version only) 近日有不少新聞指我會辭任香港單車隊教練,擔任其他工作等,首先好感謝大家關注我的去向,我會辭去教練工作留港發展,並且繼續在推廣運動工作方面出一分力,有消息一定通知大家。 但有一點各傳媒朋友所寫是對的,就是我真的希望有多點時間,照顧我的妻子及囝囝。 我還好記得當日太太分娩的過程,當BB出生的一刻,真的覺得又感動又奇妙。我相信,每一個小朋友都是上天恩賜給我們的禮物。 對爸爸媽媽來說,沒甚麼比BB健康成長更為重要。我不時被問到會否想BB做「接班人」,其實他做甚麼職業都不重要,最重要的是他活得健康、簡單和開心。 近日我收到UNICEF的一些資訊,有一句是我很喜歡的,就是「您不需要超能力去當個『超級好爸』,只要給小朋友足夠的保護、營養及啟發,已經可以好好幫助小朋友的大腦發展。」 我了解到小朋友由受孕一刻的首1,000天都十分重要,而且他們的大腦發展也相當迅速,甚至可以是大人的兩倍,加上我自己都是單親家庭長大,所以好明白爸爸在一個小朋友成長過程中的重要性。我希望趁囝囝年幼,可以好好把握這一段時間,就算是跟他玩多一點,都可以幫助囝囝有更好的發展。 新手爸爸可能未必對湊BB有太多知識,但只要努力和堅持,我們每一個都可以是「超級好爸」──我們可以支持太太餵奶、幫手分擔家務、哄他們入睡、與他們玩、與他們傾計等等…… 在此都跟自己和各位爸爸說聲「加油!」,也祝各位爸爸父親節快樂!   阿寶

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( Chinese version only) Wong Kam-po sends a letter to all fathers and supports Super Dads campaign with David Beckham, Novak Djokovic and other UNICEF ambassadors

© Wong Kam-po (Chinese version only) 香港,2017年6月15日── 星期日就是父親節,身兼聯合國兒童基金香港委員會(UNICEF HK)大使的黃金寶當爸爸快近兩年,有感而發撰信「給天下爸爸」,指希望能多花時間在兒子身上,給他一個快樂童年之餘,亦促進兒子健康成長。 黃金寶在信中指,仍未確定去向,但辭任教練後希望繼續推廣運動發展,並有多點時間照顧妻兒。他表示:「自己在單親家庭長大,明白爸爸在一個小朋友成長過程中的重要性。我希望趁囝囝年幼,可以好好把握這一段時間,就算是跟他玩多一點,都可以幫助囝囝有更好的發展。」 黃金寶也響應聯合國兒童基金會(UNICEF)「超級好爸」倡議活動,強調父親在兒童早期發展的關鍵角色,並鼓勵更多爸爸透過關愛及遊戲等行動,促進幼兒大腦健康發展。 是項「超級好爸」倡議活動亦獲UNICEF國際親善大使碧咸、祖高域等一同響應。祖高域表示,作為一個父親,他看到了每一個微笑、每一點愛及每一個積極的行動都對寶寶童年生活都產生了有利影響。他明白全球爸爸在生活上都會面對許多挑戰,希望透過這個倡議活動,支持和鼓勵父親成為他們孩子最珍愛的「超級好爸」。 現時全球有90多個國家慶祝父親節,UNICEF「超級好爸」倡議活動,邀請全球市民由即日起至父親節期間,在社交媒體上載與孩子共度美好時光的照片和影片。UNICEF表示,在幼兒期間,特別是生命的首1,000天,兒童大腦急速發展,因此父母應好好把握這一生只有一次的機會,透過給予兒童足夠的營養、遊戲及關愛,好好培育兒童,刺激他們大腦發展,亦為他們的未來奠下重要基礎。研究更指,兒童多與父親互動,對兒童心理健康、自尊和生活滿意度都有長遠益處。 香港市民也可於Instagram上載照片,並加上「#EarlyMomentsMatter」標籤參與活動。UNICEF將於網上平台分享「超級好爸」活動收集到最溫馨、幽默、最有想像力的照片和影片。

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1 in 5 children in rich countries lives in relative income poverty, 1 in 8 faces food insecurity

© UNICEF/UNI173330/Pirozzi Walid Mechrhale, 14, stands outside the Alkadia youth centre, in the city of Turin, Piedmont Region, Italy. Rich countries face challenges meeting global commitments to children, new report says FLORENCE/NEW YORK/HONG KONG, 15 June 2017 – 1 in 5 children in high-income countries lives in relative income poverty and an average of 1 […]

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More than 40,000 children in the line of fire in Ar-Raqqa, Syria, as fighting intensifies

© UNICEF/UN066042/Souleiman On 18 May 2017 in Al-Tabqa city in the Syrian Arab Republic, Hasan, 12 (red shirt) and his friends walk past a destroyed car. He and his family have been uprooted twice due to violence, forcing him to drop out of school . Statement attributable to Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF Regional Director in the […]

150,000 children in Greater Kasai region need emergency support to continue education

© UNICEF/Dubourthoumieu Tshinyama Primary School is one of four schools plundered during clashes in March 2017 in Nganza commune, 4km from Kamina, the capital of Kasai province Occidental, Democratic Republic of the Congo. More than 600 schools damaged in attacks KINSHASA/ DAKAR/ GENEVA/ NEW YORK/ HONG KONG, 9 June 2017 – More than 150,000 children […]

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Number of suspected cholera cases reaches 100,000 in Yemen

© UNICEF/Alzekri On 12 May 2017 at the Sab’een Hospital in Sana’a, Yemen, children suffering from severe diarrhoea or cholera receive treatment. SANA’A, Yemen/Hong Kong, 8 June 2017 – The number of suspected cholera cases in Yemen continues to rise, reaching 101,820 with 791 deaths as of 7 June 2017. Worst affected are the country’s most […]

Mahershala Ali, David Beckham, the All Blacks, Daniel Cormier, Novak Djokovic, Lewis Hamilton, Hugh Jackman, Sachin Tendulkar, Thalía and Chris Weidman among stars to join Super Dads campaign to highlight fathers’ critical role in children’s early development

© UNICEF/UN059748/Ose Nachadee Lokwabong, 50, holds his one-week-old son Enoch Rofich for the first time at home in the Amudat district of Karamoja, Uganda, 15 March 2017. “I am happy,” says Nachadee as he looks down at his newborn son and strokes his cheek. NEW YORK/ HONG KONG, 6 June 2017 – Stars from the […]