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United Nations Children`s Fund (UNICEF) (Active)
 Mission UNICEF IN AZERBAIJAN UNICEF has been working in Azerbaijan since 1993. Our current programme runs from 20005-2009. Our goal is: all rights for all children, with no child left out. We work with government, with international organizations, with media and with children and young people to: ? Lobby for effective policies to benefit children. ? Support innovative programmes to care for and protect children ? Ensure that the voices of children and young people are heard. We take a human rights-based approach to our work with and for children. This means finding the answers to the fundamental questions: ? Who and where are the children and families most directly affected by a given issue? ? What are their views on their situation? What do they see as the solution? ? Who is responsible for action on this issue? ? Do they have the necessary capacity and resources to take action? The aim is to identify those who can make the most difference in the challenges that face children, and help them to fulfill their obligations. KEY CHALLENGIES FOR CHILDREN IN AZERBAIJAN: ? Deteriorating health: Infant and maternal mortality rates are the highest in Europe. With over 100 children dying before the age of five for every 1,000 live births, Azerbaijan has an Under-five Mortality Rate (U5MR) ranking of 46 in the world, putting it on a par with countries that have much lower GNI per capita. One of the main problems in the health system, particularly for vulnerable groups, is access to good quality pharmaceuticals at reasonable prices. Poor nutrition is a major underlying cause of child mortality, with 10% of babies born underweight, 13% of children under five stunted, and 75% suffering from Vitamin A deficiency. ? Education: Only 11% of children pre-school, with large discrepancies between rural and urban areas. The quality of education has deteriorated since the early 1990s and many teachers have left the education system because of the falling value of their salaries and the deteriorating school environment. While enrolment rates are monitored regularly, there is no routine data on attendance rates disaggregated by gender. ? Poverty: The official unemployment rate was 1.4% in October 2003, but unofficial sources suggest that more than 10% of economically active citizens are unemployed. Almost half of the population lives in poverty, i.e. below less than a dollar a day. Analyses by age-groups based on the results of household budget survey 2003 indicate that children are again the most vulnerable, with under 15 year age group having the highest poverty level 50%. ? Child Protection: Around 10% of children do not live in a family environment, with significant numbers living in institutions. Precise numbers are unknown, as no comprehensive survey has been carried out. Many still believe that children receive better care in an institution. This belief, combined with low household incomes and poor regulatory mechanisms, has resulted in increased child institutionalization. As many as 15% of births go unregistered as a result of bureaucratic procedures and informal payments for registration. The emergence of ?Street children? is a relatively new phenomenon and stems from the sharp drop in the economic and social status of families. Available figures are flexible and seasonable. The latest information from the Ministry of Internal Affairs says that over 500 children were registered at police stations in 2003 for petty crimes, of whom 80% were not attending school. Approximately 24 of Azerbaijan?s 65 regions are thought to be contaminated with landmines and unexploded ordnance (UXO). Of those killed by landmines or UXO to date, 13% have been children. ? Refugees and displacement: The ling-standing conflict with Armenia remains unresolved and the upheavals of 1988-1993 continue to cause suffering. There are nearly 1 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) and refugees from Armenia and other countries, over half of them women and children. Refugees and displaced people have poverty levels 20% higher than the national average. ? HIV/AIDS: As of 2006, there were around 1000 registered cases of HIV/AIDS. In 50% of these, injection drug use was the main mode of transmission, with the sharing of needles the major immediate cause. Knowledge about HIV/AIDS and its prevention is low. Only one third of 10-18-year olds about HIV/AIDS and slightly more that two thirds of those aged 19-24 years believe that it can be prevented. HIV/AIDS is not addressed with the seriousness warranted, and traditions prevent open discussion. OUR RESPONSE: Action on child health and nutrition: We continue to support national health reform and the decentralization of services. Recognising the huge discrepancies between official and survey data on infant, child and maternal mortality, we support improvements to the health information system. In response to the alarming level of child malnutrition, we work with the government, NGOs and youth volunteers to combat iodine deficiency disorders, anemia and Vitamin A deficiency. Within the space of three years, the percentage of households consuming iodized salt has increased from virtually zero to 70%. As a fervent supporter of breastfeeding, UNICEF continues to support the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative. Also, we have partnered with major donors, including the World Bank and USAID to create a national Primary Health Care policy based on the lessons learned from health and nutrition projects and the results of an assessment of the outcomes of primary health are reform. As a result UNICEF advocacy, the government has taken full responsibility for the provision of vaccines. (with the exception of Hepatitis B) since 2003. Action on education: Based on our experience on the integration of early child care and the development of households and formal pre-school, we are working with the government and NGOs on comprehensive policy formulation in this area. We continue to be involved in the education reform process. While continuing our support of the education reform process to increase the quality of education through enhancing early childhood development, encouraging active learning methodologies and encapsulating children?s rights issues into school curriculum, UNICEF aims to empower parents and families. Our success with parent-teacher associations gives us the confidence to take this project to scale. We are also supporting the introduction of interactive learning to ensure that children learn effectively so that they are motivated and achieve results at school. Action on Child Protection: UNICEF advocates for legislative reform and supports alternatives to institutionalized child-care. Our major concerns are children without parental guidance, children whose development is undermined by family breakdown, children with disabilities, children with behavioral disorders, abused and neglected children, children on the street, children who are victims of exploitation and children in institutions. Social sector professionals are being trained to identify children with special needs and apply a community and family-based response to their development. We also work to boost the capacities of health, social welfare and educational institutions, particularly on psychological rehabilitation. UNICEF is gravely concerned about children living in mine/UXO contaminated areas, and cooperates with national partners to provide Mine Risk Education in schools in the frontline areas. We support the development of national databases on child rights and promote the use of rights-based data for policy development and monitoring. We put a special emphasis on advocacy for the protection of social services for children and women, using the CRC, CEDAW and Education for all as tools to promote and influence policy reform on child protection. Action on Young People?s health, development and participation: We support efforts to inform young people about the dangers of high-risk behaviors, including HIV/AIDS, with a special focus most at risk, such as IDPs and refugees and other impoverished and marginalized groups. Our main strategy is the empowerment and participation of young people and our collaboration with young people?s organizations aims to promote active participation. Out involvement in the HIV/AIDS country theme group has contributed to the government?s efforts to develop a national plan of action for HIV/AIDS. We are committed to increasing media activities by, with and for children. Also we support projects that allow young people to highlight the problems they face, tp propose solutions and prepare them for a society where freedom of speech and thought prevails.
 International headquarter New York, USA
 Organization activity
Capacity building
 Organization locations
Baku: 24, S. Dadashov
Phones: (99412 ) 4923013; 4921782
Fax: (99412) 99412 4922468
E-mail: baku@unicef.org
 Key staff
Ms.HanaaSinger - UNICEF Representative
Ms.LeylaHuseynova - Executive Assistant
Mr.SirajMahmudov - Programme Planning Officer
Ms.AynaMollazade - Communciation Officer
Ms.ElzaIbrahimova - Communication Assistant
Ms.GillianWilcox - Deputy Representative
Mr.RadoslawRzehak - Child Protection Manager
Mr.ElnurAliyev - Programme Communication Officer
Ms.DinaraAbbas - Health & Nutrition Officer
Ms.ShafagRahimova - Adolescent Development Officer
Ms.JamilaJarrahova - Adolescent Development Specialist
Ms.GulanaHuseynova - Development Officer
Ms.FatimaJafarova - Programme Assistant
Ms.VafaAbbasova - Programme Assistant
Ms.NarminOsmanli - Programme Assistant
Ms.AysuEfendiyeva - Administrative Assistant
Mr.AgaraziDadashov - Operation Officer
Ms.SevilGasimova - Accounts & Finance Assistant
Mr.ElmanBayramov - Supply Assistant
Mr.EminHuseynov - IT Assistant
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