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The best investment a country can make is to invest in its children and the realization of their rights. Moreover, rights can only be fully realized when the rights-holders are empowered to use and enjoy them.
Over the past decade, Turkey has made progress in creating mechanisms for child rights monitoring and child participation as well as access to justice for children. A child ombudsperson has been appointed, children have been consulted on the drafting of a new constitution and a National Child Rights Strategy has been adopted.

HOWEVER, there is still more to be done.

Turkey is one of the four OECD countries with the lowest public social spending, including spending for children[1]. Although child rights indicators and databases have been set up, there is still a need for comparable disaggregated data (geographic, gender, ethnic etc.) to address disparities among children and measure progress. In addition, the meaningful involvement of children in the development of policies which affect them is not systematic.
In order to ensure effective investment in and further empowerment of all children,UNICEF in Turkey calls on all political parties to commit to the following actions:

  • Establish a comprehensive knowledge generation system to provide regular and timely data and information concerning children, especially the most vulnerable ones.
  • Prioritize the realization of child rights for all children and ensure that required related investments are reflected in the national budget.
  • Create opportunities for the meaningful participation of children in all relevant contexts and processes, and safeguard their freedom of expression and access to justice.


UNITE for children, VOTE for children!

[1] Social Expenditure Update, Insights from the OECD Social Expenditure database (SOCX), OECD, November 2014.
UNICEF Turkey Country Office, Yukarı Dikmen Mah. Alexsander Dubçek Cd. 7/106, 06450 Çankaya/Ankara. Telephone: +90 312 454 1000 Fax: +90 312 496 1461 E-mail: ankara@unicef.org