Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Mali: assessing child poverty and disparities towards better results for children

Mali is one of the first countries in West and Central Africa to complete the study on Child Poverty and Disparities. In an interview with Marcel Kanyankore Rudasingwa, UNICEF Representative in Mali, he points out that Mali has made significant progress in combating household poverty since 2001. The national poverty alleviation strategy has borne fruit: between 2001 and 2006, monetary poverty fell 8 points, from 55.6% to 47.4%. This progress, albeit laudable, is insufficient to meet the Millennium Development Goals.

To build on what has been achieved since 2001 and accelerate progress towards attaining the MDGs, while fulfilling children and women’s rights in Mali, better knowledge was needed of the extent of deprivation and disparities affecting children and the most-at-risks groups. The information from the Child Poverty Study is essential to better target public policies that can translate into results for children. The study shows that among 5.1 million children under 15, more than 4.3 millions – that’s 8 out of 10 children – face severe deprivation in at least one of the 7 areas researched. The main priority identified in the report is putting children at the heart of public policies and national budgets, so that these work for children, who make up half the population of Mali.

Click here for the full interview

Click here for the full report in French

Focal point: Robert Ndamobissi: rndamobissi@unicef.org, UNICEF Mali