Many Canadians say they believe Canada must be one of the best places to be a child. Many children see things differently. The facts say that we could definitely be better. UNICEF Canada is launching the Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being to signpost the way from where we stand to the place Canadians think we should be.
WHAT IS THE CANADIAN INDEX OF CHILD AND YOUTH WELL-BEING?
A FRAMEWORK TO:
COMMUNICATE TO CANADIANS WHAT CANADA IS LIKE FOR KIDS FROM BIRTH TO AGE 18
TRACK PROGRESS FOR THEIR RIGHTS AND WELL-BEING
GUIDE ACTION TO ADDRESS THE GREATEST CHALLENGES
Together as Canada, we can foster a society where all children belong and are supported.
Harnoor, age 17
A better version of ourselves
The Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being has been evolving since 2013 with help from hundreds of Canadians. We hosted roundtables, design sprints and a Delphi process. We hit the books, the streets, the festivals and the offices of government officials, researchers and business leaders across the country. We spoke with young people in First Nations communities, big cities and closed custody. We are building the Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being around an inspiring and achievable vision of children’s lives in an equitable and sustainable society.
A country where no child lives in poverty; where they’re healthy, safe and secure; where they’re free to dream, play, wonder and learn; where they know who they are, where they came from, and where they’re going; where they have access to the resources they need to reach their full potential; where they feel loved and that they belong.
WHAT'S IN THE INDEX?
9 dimensions of children’s lives
1 number to measure progress toward 8 million great childhoods
Is this what well-being looks like ?
This is a “prototype” of the Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being. It is an unfinished work in progress to ask, is this what child and youth well-being looks like to you? Please share your ideas. We will continue to refine the Index to better reflect what it means to be a society in which every child can achieve their rights and their dreams.
From index to impact
The Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being helps to focus efforts where they are greatly needed, from healthy relationships to freedom to play. To turn economic progress into progress for children. To raise the next generation of Canadians who stand with strong roots and reach for big dreams.
7 ways you can use the Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being:
- Understand what life is like for children and youth in Canada.
- Develop better data for and with children.
- Set bolder goals and benchmarks for community, regional and national progress for children.
- Advocate for children – influence decision-makers to make Canada among the best places to grow up.
- Design solutions - policies, investments, programs and practices that address our greatest challenges - and measure their impacts.
- Track progress toward commitments including the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
- Do this with children and youth.
Canada’s children have one chance to be children. Canada has a chance to be a better country for children. Stand with children.
A Big City Challenge
Waterloo Region is one of five “Big Cities” finalists in the Smart Cities Challenge, a federal government-led competition that encourages communities to come up with innovative solutions to their most pressing challenge. Waterloo Region entered this competition, for $50 million over 5 years, with a focus on children and youth. Their vision - the basis of their Challenge - is to become the benchmark community in Canada for child and youth well-being measured by the Canadian Index of Child and Youth Well-being. Their focus is to improve early child development, mental health and high school graduation rates. Waterloo Region is not afraid of setting bold goals and measuring them. If every big city in Canada had such resolve, Canada would be much closer to the top of UNICEF league tables of child and youth well-being.
What’s Next for the Index in 2019?
- The First Baseline Report
- A portal to help you use the data
- Personalize the Index!
- Check this space for more exciting opportunities to use the Index