NEW YORK (August 12, 2020) – on August 12, 2020, International Youth Day, an annual observance to celebrate young peoples’ voices, actions and meaningful, equitable engagement, UNICEF USA announced the launch of the Child Friendly Cities Initiative (CFCI) in the United States. Houston, TX; San Francisco, CA; Minneapolis, MN and Prince George’s County, MD will serve as the first cohort of cities and the first country to implement an ambitious, two-year process toward recognition as a UNICEF Child Friendly City.
Originally created in 1996, UNICEF’s Child Friendly Cities Initiative uses a child rights-based framework to build a roadmap for establishing safer, more just, equitable, inclusive and child-responsive cities and communities around the world. Since its inception, CFCI has been adopted in over 3,000 municipalities in 40 countries. UNICEF USA applauds these municipalities for their commitment to using this framework to build better communities for children.
“This year has seen so many challenges that have deeply impacted children and families, and also shown the important role that local governments play in supporting them,” said UNICEF USA President and CEO Michael J. Nyenhuis. “As an organization that has dedicated nearly 74 years to protecting and supporting children around the world, UNICEF USA is proud to use this moment to help build better communities for children here in the United States alongside Houston, Minneapolis, San Francisco and Prince George’s County.”
In its pursuit of recognition as a Child Friendly City, government officials and community leaders in Houston, Minneapolis, San Francisco and Prince George’s County will conduct a situational analysis of child well-being in each city. Based on these findings, the cities will implement an action plan that prioritizes the best interests of children and youth within their local policies. CFCI will empower leaders to address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and systemic racism on children, work to combat discrimination and elevate their voices in local governance and decision-making.
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For more information about Child Friendly Cities Initiative in the Unites States, visit www.unicefusa.org/mission/usa/childfriendlycities.
To take action and encourage cities across the United States to become more child friendly, visit act.unicefusa.org/childhood.