The State of the World's Children 2011 - Adolescence an Age of Opportunity

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This report catalogues, in heart-wrenching detail, the array of dangers adolescents face: the injuries that kill 400,000 of them each year; early pregnancy and childbirth, a primary cause of death for teenage girls; the pressures that keep 70 million adolescents out of school; exploitation, violent conflict and the worst kind of abuse at the hands of adults. It also examines the dangers posed by emerging trends like climate change, whose intensifying effects in many developing countries already undermine so many adolescents’ well being, and by labour trends, which reveal a profound lack of employment opportunities for young people, especially those in poor countries. Adolescence is not only a time of vulnerability, it is also an age of opportunity. This is especially true when it comes to adolescent girls. We know that the more education a girl receives, the more likely she is to postpone marriage and motherhood - and the more likely it is that her children will be healthier and better educated. By giving all young people the tools they need to improve their own lives, and by engaging them in efforts to improve their communities, we are investing in the strength of their societies. Through a wealth of concrete examples, The State of the World’s Children 2011 makes clear that sustainable progress is possible. It also draws on recent research to show that we can achieve that progress more quickly and cost-effectively by focusing first on the poorest children in the hardest-to-reach places. Such a focus on equity will help all children, including adolescents.


Anna Grojec, Anne Santiago, Arati Rao, Baishalee Nayak, Carol Holmes, Céline Little, Charlotte Maitre, Chris Brazier, Hirut Gebre-Egziabher, Jordan Tamagni, Judith Yemane, Julia Szczuka, Kristin Moehlmann, Marilia Di Noia, Maritza Ascencios, Meedan Mekonnen, Robert Lehrman, Shobana Shankar, Tina Johnson

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