Fast facts

Less than 10% of children

Could access early childhood care and education in one-third of countries in 2011.

Quote of the month

Healthy mothers and healthy children make healthy societies. Giving them health is a job for all.

Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General


Present in Uzbekistan since 1994, UNICEF has worked tirelessly to ensure that the nation’s youngest citizens can thrive in a caring, supportive and nurturing society. In accordance with its official mandate, UNICEF has advocated to guarantee that the rights of Uzbekistan’s children are protected, that their basic needs are met, and that they have every opportunity to reach their full potential. 

UNICEF is guided by the Convention on the Rights of the Child and strives to establish children's rights as enduring ethical principles and international standards of behaviour towards children.

Through its successive programmes of cooperation, UNICEF has assisted the Government of Uzbekistan at central and local levels to address issues related to the rights and well-being of children and their families, in partnership with civil society organisations, parliament, communities, youth, mass media, and both multilateral and bilateral development partners. 

National priorities

UNICEF’s priorities in Uzbekistan have included ensuring the health and well-being of mothers and children, through the introduction of international standards of maternal and child healthcare, the promotion of best nutritional practices including food fortification and exclusive breastfeeding, and the integration of HIV prevention, care and support services into the national health system. 

UNICEF has also worked to guarantee that every child in Uzbekistan can develop, learn and grow in a supportive environment. To achieve this goal, UNICEF has worked to improve the quality and efficiency of basic and preschool education, and to protect children from all forms of abuse, from unnecessary institutionalisation, and from harmful contact with the nation’s legal system.

UNICEF has also supported the government in strengthening policies to reduce the impact of poverty on children and families, to improve state coordination systems for monitoring, reporting on and implementing child rights, and to enhance disaster preparedness and build a culture of safety and prevention at a local level.

To ensure its success in the above areas, UNICEF in Uzbekistan utilises a Communication for Development (C4D) approach. By communicating directly with project beneficiaries on a community level, UNICEF has worked to promote desired behaviours related to child survival, development, care and growth. 

The country programme of cooperation

The current Country Programme of Cooperation for 2010-2015, developed and utilised by UNICEF and the Government of Uzbekistan, is designed to ensure the protection of the rights of every women and child in Uzbekistan. The programme is designed to achieve both national priorities and Millennium Development Goals in this field, in accordance with both the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). 

The Country Programme focuses on two major areas. Firstly the programme works to improve the quality of basic social services, specifically in the areas of maternal and child health, nutrition, HIV/AIDS, education and child protection, with a focus on the nation’s most vulnerable children. Secondly the programme works to strengthen the national social policy for implementing and monitoring child rights, by both enhancing systems for analysing data at national and sub-national levels, and promoting evidence-based decision making. 

The Country Programme works to achieve its objectives in Uzbekistan on national, sub-national and community levels. On a national level the programme aims to strengthen social policy and systems management, on a sub-national level it aims to reinforce partnerships with local governments in order to identify regional gaps in child services, and on a community level it aims to empower both service providers and families to promote and support positive behaviour development and change.