28 December 2021. DILI. The Ministry of Finance, the Commission on the Rights of the Child (CDC), and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) jointly launched the report on the Situation Analysis of Children in Timor-Leste at an event held at the Ministry of Finance today. The Report has been produced by the Ministry of Finance – General Directorate of Statistics, the Commission on Child Rights and UNICEF, with inputs from key line ministries and partners.
Children aged 0-17 years account for 44 per cent of the country’s population in 2020. The report provides an analysis of the current status of child rights in Timor-Leste, identifies challenges faced by children and their families, and sets out key recommendations for consideration by the Government and development partners. It aims to support the national development planning; raise awareness of the situation of children; serve as a reference for advocacy; and strengthen the “enabling environment” – the national framework of laws, policies, strategies, plans and public budgetary provisions – to ensure sustainable improvements in the survival, development, protection and participation of Timorese children.
“This report on the Situation Analysis of Children offers solid evidence and baseline information that would help plan and implement initiatives to realize child rights spelled out in Timor-Leste’s National Strategic Development Plan for 2011-2030 and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals,” said the Minister of Finance, H.E. Rui A. Gomes. “We ask all development partners to align programmes with the national strategies, taking into account the recommendations of this report, and support the achievement of goals set out for children in Timor-Leste, be it for programming or funding.”
The research uses a sectoral approach to analyzing data and the situation of children, including in health, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), education and child protection. It also uses the life-cycle approach to examine critical periods, challenges and opportunities in early childhood and adolescence.
“This report brings to the fore issues faced by children in Timor-Leste and helps deepen understanding of the challenges they face, as well as the critical opportunities to ensure that children survive and thrive,” said UNICEF Country Representative, Mr. Bilal Durrani.
“It includes the voices of children on a reimagined future, and potential solutions to address the challenges that they face today.”
“Even though Timor-Leste has demonstrated remarkable progress over the past years, a lot still remains to be done. If investments and action are not taken now, a significant proportion of children would not have the opportunities that are their right, be it the right to survival, nutrition, access to healthcare or education and protection” said Ms. Dinorah Granadeiro, Commissioner for the Rights of the Child.
The development of the report was funded by Japan.
“The achievement of child’s rights is critical to the development of a state especially in a country such as Timor-Leste where half of its population is below the age of 18. As a part of its commitment to children in Timor-Leste, Japan is supporting the project for the development of birth registration system in Timor-Leste implemented by UNICEF and the Government of Timor-Leste. It is gratifying to see the Situation Analysis of Children in Timor-Leste launched today as a part of this project, as knowing the facts and data is an important first step to solving any issue” said Ms. Kazumi Yamada, Deputy head of mission, the Embassy of Japan.