Today is World Children’s Day. So how are kids faring across the globe? Here are some of the latest statistics from UNICEFs 2013 State of the World’s Children Report.

[table width=”500″ colwidth=”400|25|25|25|25″ colalign=”left|center|center|center|center”]
Area,World,Sth Asia,Sub-Sah Africa,Australia
Children dying before their 5th birthday,5.1%,6.2%,10.9%,0.5%
Children under 5 who are underweight (malnourished),16%,33%,21%,-
Children with HIV,3.4m,0.9m,3.1m,-
Children completing primary school,81%,95%,60%,-
Children 5-14 involved in child labour*,15%,12%,26%,-
Child marriage**,11%,18%,12%,-

[/table]

I find myself saddened, appalled and ashamed by these statistics. Children deserve better than this. Yet I am also hopeful, for if you look at long term trends, the situation for children is improving. This encourages me to keep on praying, keep on giving and keep on advocating for a world where every child is safe, healthy and free.

*defined as children age 5-11 who did at least 1 hr of economic activity or 28 hours of domestic chores per week, or children 12-14 years old who did at least 1 hr of economic activity or 28 hours of domestic chores per week.
** defined as women age 20-24 who were first married by their 15th birthday

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