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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is one of the organizations under the United Nations. It deals with various issues relating to the welfare of children in various parts of the world. For instance, it ensures that children access education, health services, and food. UNICEF functions around the globe in various ways which could be compared and contrasted. For instance, it fosters children’s participation in governance while, at the same time, fighting poor political leadership. In addition, UNICEF actively advocates for children’s rights. On the other hand, it serves as a vital body for children’s access to basic needs. It is a vehicle for economic empowerment; it encourages the reliance on food handouts in the country.

This essay compares and contrasts the functions of UNICEF.

UNICEF is involved in promoting children’s participation in governance in most countries. UNICEF recognizes children as full-fledged citizens who deserve a chance to participate in governance of the country. UNICEF (2007) asserts that it urges governments to be all-inclusive and ensure that children get their representation in political matters. This would help diversify the politics of any given country because of the diverse representatives accommodated in political running of the country. The incorporation of children in governance would present the country with an opportunity to build future political leaders because of the experience gained. On the other hand, UNICEF participates in the fight against poor leadership in various countries. According to the organization, poor leadership involves issues such as dictatorial regimes that want to dominate over their citizens. The organization fights against poor leadership in order to protect children because they are the ones to be adversely affected. Thus, UNICEF targets poor leadership in order to ensure that children access basic needs, such as food, shelter, and proper clothing. Through this, children are able to live in a war-free world and attain their future goals.

UNICEF is engaged in advocating for the rights of children, as outlined in the constitutions of various countries. It helps in the interpretation of such rights and ensures that the authorities adhere to them. This helps in the protection of children against political and parental abuse. It ensures that children are being treated as written down in the laws of the country. Violation of such rights could force the body to launch a lawsuit against the government authorities. The fight for the constitutional rights of children is vital because it enables them to grow with a sense of leadership and peaceful coexistence. UNICEF (2007) asserts that this would help in ensuring that there is political goodwill all over the world, as most people interact with each other freely. On the other hand, it acts as a body facilitating access to children’s basic needs in the country. This is common in poorer countries where most children are unable to fulfill their basic needs. The organization funds relief supplies and ensures that they are distributed fairly according to the existing needs. Through this, UNICEF helps in solving problems relating to children and women in society. The distribution of relief supplies and provision of health facilities helps in the reduction of deaths among children. This helps governments be more stable in their operations, because the problems relating to the welfare of citizens, especially children, are solved. This would help in ensuring that the running of political affairs in the country is smooth, and children in the society are catered for, instead of being left to struggle on their own at an earlier age.

UNICEF also helps in economic empowerment all over the world. UNICEF promulgates various economic development policies that would be vital for a country wishing to transform its economy. It does not only concentrate on the provision of basic needs to children, but it also ensures that appropriate structures for self-reliance are set in place. For instance, UNICEF ensures that schools and health facilities are set in place. These are vital because they would help in the empowerment of children and the realization of set goals. Policies relating to economic development are set up all over the globe, hence ensuring that countries prosper and care for their fast growing populations. On the other hand, UNICEF has only distributed food handouts in the affected areas. This is where the hardest-hit areas are only given the supplies they require, instead of setting up the permanent structures that would help in the future development of such areas. UNICEF (2008) observes that children in such areas grow up relying on relief supplies. This kills the spirit of work and self-independence in most countries. They would have to continue relying on others for supplies and the fulfillment of children welfare.

In conclusion, UNICEF is a body of the United Nations that is responsible for ensuring that the welfare of children is catered for from various perspectives. The various functions of UNICEF could be compared and contrasted. For instance, it fights for the participation of children in governance while, at the same time, resisting poor leadership. In addition, it fights for the rights of children as written in the respective country’s constitution. It also provides a roadmap for disadvantaged children to access basic needs, such as food. It boosts economic empowerment through various polices while, on the other hand, it only concentrates on the distribution of relief supplies that may increase the levels of dependence in the economy.

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