The United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) works in 190 countries and territories to save children's lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence. 

UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

In all of its work, UNICEF takes a life-cycle based approach, recognizing the particular importance of early childhood development and adolescence. UNICEF programmes focus on the most disadvantaged children, including those living in fragile contexts, those with disabilities, those who are affected by rapid urbanization and those affected by environmental degradation.


Stereotypes, attitudes and behaviours
UNICEF commits to ongoing efforts to combat stigma, discrimination, and other forms of violence against children with disabilities.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: UNICEF will achieve this through: evidence-based communication, community engagement and social mobilization strategies to foster inclusive attitudes and behaviours, including the provision of programmes to enhance capacities of parents; improving the availability of data on violence against children, disaggregated by disability status using the UNICEF/Washington Group Child Functioning Module; commitment to playing an active role in supporting and promoting the mission of the Global Partnership to end Violence against Children with a focus on children with disabilities.


Theme: Eliminate Stigma and Discrimination
Year: 2018

Inclusive education sector plans
UNICEF will enable an additional 30 million children with disabilities to gain a good quality education by 2030 through programmes in more than 140 partner countries on collecting disaggregated data, assisting governments to develop and implement inclusive education sector plans, and providing practical assistance with making school buildings accessible, supplying accessible learning materials and assistive devices, building the capacity of administrators and teachers, and campaigning to end discrimination and stigma.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: Over the next three years, UNICEF will: encourage partner governments to collect data on children with disabilities both through administrative systems and using the MICS6 Child Functioning household survey module; publish guidelines on inclusive education sector analysis; develop a training course on inclusive education sector planning with UNESCO-IIEP; develop innovative accessible digital learning materials; and join, support and contribute to the Partnership for Inclusive Education.

Theme: Inclusive Education
Year: 2018

Join Global Partnership for Assistive Technology
By 2021, UNICEF will apply its programmatic and procurement expertise to support governments and partners to improve availability and affordability of assistive technologies and products for children with disabilities, including in humanitarian contexts. 

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: UNICEF will achieve this by: investing in building internal capacity and human resources on assistive technology; developing product specifications, catalogues and offering procurement support to governments; supporting governments and partners to set up effective ecosystems for provisioning of assistive technology; using innovations to fill gaps and availability of assistive products; and joining and supporting the Global Partnership on Assistive Technology.

Theme: Harnessing Technology and Innovation
Year: 2018

Commit to use the Washington Group questions
By 2021, UNICEF commits to support at least 30 countries to strengthen the availability, quality and use of data on children with disabilities through implementation of the Child Functioning Module developed in partnership with the Washington Group on Disability Statistics.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: UNICEF will achieve this by: providing technical assistance to countries for the collection, interpretation and dissemination of data through implementation of the UNICEF/Washington Group Child Functioning Module; developing data collection tools on environmental barriers faced by children with disabilities in accessing education, including in humanitarian settings; strengthening capacity of National Statistical Offices and Disabled People’s Organizations for the collection, interpretation and dissemination of data; and, supporting data disaggregation by disability status across child wellbeing indicators.

Theme: Data Disaggregation
Year: 2018

UNICEF commits to strengthening inclusion of children with disabilities in humanitarian action in 35 countries by 2021.

Timeframe and/or implementation plan: This will be achieved by improving data disaggregated by age, sex and disability, including through implementation of UNICEF/Washington Group Child Functioning Module;  investing in building capacity of UNICEF staff and partners, including DPOs, to more effectively include disability in humanitarian programming;  designing and adapting humanitarian interventions to be more disability-inclusive and accessible; using universal design, innovations and expertise in procurement to make humanitarian supplies more inclusive, accessible and available to persons with disabilities.

Theme: Conflict and Humanitarian Contexts
Year: 2018