Sunday, 2 August 2020

UNICEF Says Croatia Has Relatively High Breastfeeding Rates

ZAGREB, Aug 2, 2020 - On the occasion of the 30th World Breastfeeding Week, UNICEF said that Croatia remains among the countries with relatively high breastfeeding rates, with two in three babies under two months of age and 57% of children aged three to five months breastfed.

Breastfeeding has invaluable importance for every child's health, notably premature babies and those whose health is compromised, the head of UNICEF's Croatia office, Regina M. Castillo, said in a press release.

That's why it's especially important to promote in every situation breastfeeding as the best choice and to give mothers the necessary support and information on the long-term benefits that breastfeeding brings both babies and mothers, she added.

All maternity hospitals in Croatia are baby-friendly

The high breastfeeding rate is also a result of Croatia's commitment to the "Baby-Friendly Maternity Hospitals" initiative because all hospitals in the country are baby-friendly, according to the press release.

A new challenge, it says, lies in the sustainability of the initiative, the development of the "mother and baby-friendly maternity hospital" initiative, and the promotion of breastfeeding in intensive care units for premature babies.

The protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding is a Croatian public health priority and part of the national health development strategy. The Health Ministry has recognised the importance of establishing a human milk bank as a key investment in the well-being of babies and ensuring the highest standard of healthcare for premature and seriously sick babies who do not have access to mother's milk.

Tuesday, 28 July 2020

UNICEF Donates 10 Oxygenators to Croatia

ZAGREB, July 28, 2020 - UNICEF on Tuesday donated 10 oxygenators to the Croatian Civil Protection Directorate, and these medical devices can be used by patients who need oxygen therapy.

Presenting the donation worth HRK 52,600, the UNICEF Croatia office head Regina Castillo said that the corona crisis affected each family and had a significant impact on the life of children.

Damir Trut of the Civil Protection Directorate thanked her for the donation and help which UNICEF has been providing since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In cooperation with the Croatian government and with the support of its partners, businesses, donors and citizens, UNICEF has provided medical and protective equipment for health workers, advice, guidelines and recommendations for families with children, and supported the online education of children and provision of social welfare services, especially for the most vulnerable families and children.

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

UNICEF Donates HRK 480,000 For Upgrading Distance Learning

ZAGREB, June 3, 2020 - UNICEF Croatia has donated over HRK 480,000 for upgrading the infrastructure needed for secure distance learning, its officials said on Wednesday.

The procurement of a new data storage system enables a secure and quality implementation of online education in Croatia, a press release said.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the amount of data in CARNET (Croatian Academic and Research Network) systems increased multifold in a short time, so UNICEF has invested in tape libraries so that all data and contents can be safely stored.

This step, it was said, has long term effects on education also as children will use virtual classrooms and online learning tools also after returning to school.

Science and Education Minister Blazenka Divjak said distance learning in Croatia was a pioneering endeavour thanks to which education was ensured for students in extraordinary circumstances due to the pandemic.

"Thanks to the curricular reform in schools, we equipped them in time, creating the prerequisites so that this type of teaching could be possible," she said, thanking the donors.

"Since distance learning began, half a million teachers and students daily have been accessing numerous apps, services, and tools via their electronic identity in the [email protected] system," said CARNET director Goran Kezunovic.

The head of UNICEF Croatia, Regina M. Castillo, said education was not just the right of every child but the biggest opportunity they could be given.

UNICEF has also worked on providing tablets and SIM cards for needy children as well as on the preparation of guidelines and advice on COVID-19 so that children, parents, and experts are informed in time and correctly, she added.

(€1 = HRK 7.58)

Monday, 18 May 2020

Denmark Supports UNICEF's Activities for Fighting Epidemic in Croatia

ZAGREB, May 18, 2020 - Denmark's government has supported UNICEF's global humanitarian response plan for fighting the coronavirus pandemic, and HRK 2.4 million have been allocated for helping children in Croatia, UNICEF said on Monday.

The funds will be used to implement UNICEF's priority programmes to support children and families at high risk in Croatia, whose lives have been affected by the pandemic and its serious socioeconomic consequences.

Denmark supports the UN's strong and coordinated activities which at the same time address immediate humanitarian needs and long-term socioeconomic consequences. Denmark has thus supported UNICEF's global response plan for the COVID-19 pandemic with HRK 50 million, and I am pleased that part of these funds would go to UNICEF's support for children in Croatia, said Christian Thorning, Ambassador of Denmark to Croatia.

Regina M. Castillo, UNICEF's Representative in Croatia, has thanked for the financial aid and underscored that the pandemic is a health crisis that also becomes a children's rights crisis.

Although it seems that the coronavirus leaves most children with minor health consequences, the secondary effects on children, especially on those from most vulnerable groups, are much more far-reaching. Many health, education and social services have been suspended. Some parents have lost their jobs and families are under increasing pressure, Castillo added.

Within the national campaign "Together against the Coronavirus", UNICEF provides children and families in Croatia with the support that includes purchasing protective and medical equipment, disinfectants, hygiene supplies and other priority equipment, as well as support for children and families facing socioeconomic challenges and at risk of poverty.

Globally, UNICEF's activities for fighting the pandemic are aimed at providing access to healthcare services, food, clean water and sanitation, as well as supporting the education and protection of children.

Monday, 30 March 2020

UNICEF Delivers 4 Tonnes of Protective and Medical Equipment to Croatia

ZAGREB, March 30, 2020 - UNICEF on Monday delivered four tonnes of professional protective and medical equipment to Croatia in an effort to respond to the current crisis caused by coronavirus.

The first shipment of protective gear has been delivered from UNICEF's Copenhagen-based warehouse and the shipment includes 30,000 medical masks and 30,000 protective gloves and 18,000 protective overalls, 4,000 bags for safe disposal of medical waste, 2,500 protective caps and 130 pairs of protective gumboots.

Considering the growing needs and challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic UNICEF is continuing its campaign and calls on its partners, the media, companies and citizens to be involved and support the campaign with their donations.

The donations are earmarked to obtain ventilators and medical equipment to the most vulnerable patients, protective gear for health workers, disinfectants and hygienic products, UNICEF said in a press release.

In addition to supplying equipment, the organisation will launch programme activities to ensure credible information and expert guidelines in an effort to help prevent the spread of the virus and to support the permanent provision of health protection, education and social services.

More coronavirus news can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Tourism Ministry, Croatian Tourist Board, UNICEF to Promote Children's Rights in Tourism

December 4, 2019 - The Ministry of Tourism, the Croatian Tourist Board, and UNICEF are cooperating on promoting children's rights in the Croatian tourism sector.

HRTurizam writes that the main objective of this cooperation is to promote good tourism practices in the context of young guests, the children of families employed in tourism, and young students and workers.

As part of the cooperation, the Ministry of Tourism, the Croatian Tourist Board and UNICEF will promote the importance of caring for children's rights in the tourism sector, through conferences, congresses, and other events, and organize training on children's rights for tourism professionals. The Ministry of Tourism and the Croatian Tourist Board will also support UNICEF's programs to help the most vulnerable children in Croatia and their families.

"Tourism is an industry of experience and emotions, and we desire that all children who visit Croatia have the opportunity to see all the best that Croatia has to offer so they can remember it forever. Likewise, tourism can be an opportunity for everyone to create together. That is why the Ministry of Tourism always encourages children and students to be creative and innovative through part of its youth programs. We want young people to be involved in creating competitive and responsible tourism, which is why working with UNICEF is another step towards building the foundations for the future of Croatian tourism, because ultimately, people are always the key to success,” said Tourism Minister Gari Cappelli.

"We are extremely proud of our cooperation with UNICEF in promoting children's rights in the tourism sector in Croatia, especially considering that children up to the age of 14 make up 18% of the total Croatian tourist traffic and form a significant segment in tourism. Accordingly, a large number of our promotional campaigns around the world, but also our total tourist offer, is directed precisely at families with children,” said Croatian Tourist Board Director Kristjan Stanicic.

Globally, UNICEF works with the travel and tourism sectors, governments and civil society organizations to promote the perspective of children's rights and to support companies in the sector in identifying and managing their impacts on children.

Cooperation with the Ministry of Tourism and the Croatian Tourist Board is an important step in the realization of children's rights in Croatian tourism and contributes to the sustainable development of tourism and society as a whole, points out Regina M. Castillo, Head of the UNICEF Office in Croatia, and adds:

“Tourism, as an important industry, has a great impact on children. The safety of children traveling with their parents, decent wages and working conditions for parents or guardians, working conditions for young employees, care for the environment in which children grow and develop are just some of the areas of interaction of the tourism sector with children. The Ministry of Tourism and the Croatian Tourist Board are strong partners who, together with UNICEF, will work to raise awareness of these impacts and promote good practices that will positively impact the lives of children and their families. We are happy that one of the leading tourist groups in Croatia - Arena Hospitality Group - will join us in this important work,” said Regina M. Castillo, Head of UNICEF Office in Croatia.

Arena Hospitality Group is the first tourism group in Croatia to support families with children from the welfare system in Istria County in cooperation with UNICEF.

On this occasion, a partnership between Arena Hospitality Group and UNICEF was announced to support UNICEF's Stronger Family Program initiative, which improves the quality of social support for families with disabilities.

Arena Hospitality Group will launch a series of activities focused on guests and employees in its selected hotels, resorts, and camps in collaboration with UNICEF to promote children's rights and solidarity with the most vulnerable members of our society. The funds raised through the cooperation will be used to support families with children from the social care system in the County of Istria.

“Arena Hospitality Group, as the first Croatian hotel company to expand its portfolio beyond the borders of Croatia, is continuously investing in the development of social responsibility towards its guests, employees, partners, shareholders and the community in which it operates. In our work, we are especially focused on families with children who strive to provide a variety of quality facilities and the highest level of service. But we also take into account the needs of families with children in our community who are facing various life difficulties. By joining forces with UNICEF, we will support the implementation of the "For a Stronger Family" program initiative, which will help strengthen systemic support for the most vulnerable families with children in Istria County. We are particularly proud to include our employees in the project, who, through activities with families and children, will draw attention to the importance of solidarity with our guests,” said Reuel Slonim, CEO of Arena Hospitality Group d.d.

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.

Friday, 27 September 2019

UNICEF: Low Awareness of Business Sector's Impact on Children's Rights in Croatia

ZAGREB, September 27, 2019 - The awareness of the potential impact of the business sector on children's rights in Croatia is relatively low - only six percent of survey respondents believe that the operation of the company they work for has a great influence on children's rights, UNICEF has warned.

These are the findings of the first national survey on the impact of the business sector on children's rights, presented at a news conference in Zagreb on Friday.

The main goal of the survey, launched by UNICEF, is to understand to what extent children's rights are recognised as part of socially responsible business in Croatia and to identify the most important obstacles and motivational factors for companies and other stakeholders for greater engagement regarding children's rights.

Most surveyed companies enable flexible sick leave if the reason is the child's illness (94%), new mothers' return from maternity leave to a safe workplace (93%), and days off for fathers after a child is born.

More than half of respondents (60%) say that at the company where they work working hours are not respected but 55% say that their company offers the possibility of flexible working hours.

Sixty-four percent of surveyed companies do not have financial schemes for assistance to their employees' children in case of their illness or assistance to children with developmental problems, and 80% are always or occasionally willing to help children in cases of sudden disasters.

Forty-seven percent of companies support local community development programmes.

Sixty-six percent of companies participate in providing financial support to the most vulnerable families (donations), 55% invest in initiatives for early child development, 42% provide support for children with developmental problems, and 11% carry out or support drives aimed at encouraging the socialisation of Roma children.

Two in three companies do not assess the impact of their products and services on children, more than 60% do not assess the quality of products or services intended for children, and 59% do not use codes regarding children in advertisement.

In order to encourage the business community to greater engagement for the benefit of children, UNICEF has launched the establishment of an advisory body for human rights and socially responsible business, which will act as a platform for the exchange of knowledge and good practice to improve respect for and exercise of children's rights in the business community.

Members of the advisory body are organisations actively advocating responsible business in Croatia (Croatian Employers Association, Croatian Business Council for Sustainable Development, Croatian Chamber of Commerce), the academic sector (Zagreb Faculty of Economics), the business sector (Zagreb Stock Exchange, IKEA, Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Croatian Banking Association, Komunikacijski Ured Ćolić, Laco i Partneri, Tele 2, A1, Croatian Federation of Market Communication Associations, and the "Zaposlena mama" (Working mum) institute, members of the Network of Young Consultants to the Ombudswoman for Children, and the UNICEF Office Croatia.

More news about children in Croatia can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 12 February 2019

UNICEF and Pampers Raise Funds for 13 Neonatal Intensive Care Units

ZAGREB, February 12, 2019 - As part of the campaign "A touch that means life", Pampers and UNICEF have raised 450,000 kuna (approx. 60,800 euro) for equipment to be used by parents staying with their children in the 13 neonatal intensive care units in Croatia.

"Premature birth is something parents usually do not expect and it causes a lot of stress," UNICEF Croatia Office head Đurđica Ivković told a news conference.

Around 2,000 children are born prematurely in Croatia every year, and 400 of them need special care. Early skin contact can help save their lives and facilitate their recovery.

Ivković said that until now parents at neonatal wards could only watch their children through the glass, while now they can stay with them and touch and hold them.

The campaign "A touch that means life" started in January 2018 ahead of International Hugging Day, when Pampers photographed people hugging and gave a kuna donation for each hug. In the second part of the campaign, by June 2018 it donated two kuna from each nappy box sold.

More news on the medical care in Croatia can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Friday, 26 October 2018

UNICEF Croatia to Cooperate in Tackling Juvenile Delinquency

ZAGREB, October 26, 2018 - UNICEF Croatia and the Office of the Chief State Prosecutor on Friday signed an agreement on strengthening the capacity of the Croatian prosecutorial authorities in tackling juvenile delinquency in the period between 2018 and 2020, with the aim of education and prevention of juvenile crimes.

"Children and teenagers who run afoul of the law need our attention and care at all levels. Before they become adults, the society has the last chance to support them in taking responsibility for their own actions and their own lives, with the assistance of professionals. Therefore, it is extremely important to have experts who can encourage positive changes in the behaviour and lives of children that have run afoul of the law," said the head of the UNICEF Croatia office in Zagreb Valentina Otmačić.

In 2017, 1,883 juvenile delinquents were reported to judicial authorities.

Chief State Prosecutor Dražen Jelenić said that the agreement would help the efforts of prosecutors for juvenile delinquency.

Under the agreement, 98 state prosecutors for juvenile delinquency and 20 experts who are not jurists will be additionally trained to work with juvenile delinquents.

(Hina) ms

Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Government and UNICEF Launch Foster Care Campaign

ZAGREB, August 28, 2018 - The Croatian Ministry of Demography, Family and Youth Affairs and Social Welfare and UNICEF, in cooperation with a civil society association that networks of foster parent organisations in Croatia, on Tuesday announced the launch of a campaign under the slogan "Every Child Needs a Family".

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