What we do

In the UK and around the world we make sure children are safe and healthy. We support them to learn, grow and become who they want to be.

CLICK AN ICON TO FIND OUT MORE

  

EVERY CHILD OFFERS SOMETHING SPECIAL

We lead the way on tackling problems like pneumonia, hunger and protecting children in war, while making sure each child’s unique needs are cared for. We find new ways to reach children who need us most, no matter where they’re growing up.

For a century, we’ve stood up for children and made sure their voices are heard. We wrote the treaty that sets out the rights of every child, and we’ve been upholding them every day since.

We know we can’t do this alone. Together with children, supporters and partners, we work to help every child become who they want to be.

Children smiling in Indonesia

SURVIVE

In the past 30 years, the number of children dying before their fifth birthday has more than halved.

But so many still die from preventable/treatable conditions. An estimated 5.4m children under the age of five died in 2017 alone.

There is so much more to be done. 

In 2018 we helped more children survive by:

• protecting children in humanitarian emergencies from disease/hunger

• tackling pneumonia, the biggest infectious killer of children

• fighting malnutrition, the underlying cause of one third of child deaths

• feeding thousands of children at risk of starvation in Yemen

LEARN

Education is every child’s brightest hope of a better future. 

Worldwide, around 250m children of primary school age cannot read or write, whether they attend school or not.

Many of the world’s most disadvantaged children – those living in poverty or caught up in humanitarian crises – are being denied the chance to learn at all.

We’re determined to change the story by:

• improving learning for children during their early years

• Putting the cost of childcare high on the political agenda

• ensuring children in humanitarian crises (including refugees) learn

• Putting children's rights at the heart of everything we do

PROTECT

The war on children is the tragedy of our time. Children are more at risk from conflict than at any time in the past 20 years.

In 2018, we treated life-threatening injuries and helped children recover from their horrific experiences.

We worked to keep at-risk children out of armed groups and reunited others with their families.

We gave them a safe space to just play and learn – something no child should be without.

Whenever and wherever children’s safety was threatened, we worked every single day to protect them.

We stepped up our responses to the Yemen and Rohingya crises, keeping thousands of children safe and campaigning for peace and justice.

Save the Children exists to help every child reach their full potential. In the UK and around the world, we make sure children stay safe, healthy and keep learning, so they can become who they want to be.

“If we have education, then we must give it to our brothers and sisters who are illiterate,” says Munni, from Patna, one of the toughest parts of India. Engaged at 13, she thought she would never set foot in a classroom. But we supported her to go to school. Now she teaches 20 local women to read and write, helping them to build a better future for their families too. That’s what our work is all about.

But Munni’s story was 100 years in the making. For a century, we’ve stood up for children’s rights and made sure their voices are heard. Our co-founder, Eglantyne Jebb, wrote the first international treaty on the rights of every child. We’ve been speaking out on the big issues that affect children ever since. Some of the UK’s biggest policy breakthroughs for children, like free school meals and nursery schools, have happened because of us. And we campaign tirelessly to uphold our country’s commitment to spend 0.7% of its budget on international aid.

We work alongside children in more than 100 countries, including the UK. Together, with Save the Children members around the world, we have three big goals. Our shared ambition is that by 2030, no child dies from preventable causes before their fifth birthday, all children learn from a quality basic education, and violence against children is no longer tolerated. 

We may tackle big problems – like pneumonia, malnutrition, conflict and lack of education – but we know that every child is different, and every one of them has something special to bring to the world.

So, when little Salma in Ethiopia got sick with pneumonia, she got the specialist medical care she needed. When Louren in Kenya was unable to walk, we gave him physiotherapy to help him take his first steps. And when Ali in the West Bank was struggling to cope with the conflict around him, we gave him one-to-one counselling.

We break new ground to solve the toughest problems facing children today. Here in the UK, we’re using digital apps to help parents support their children’s early language skills. In Rwanda, we’ve kick-started a reading revolution through clubs, workshops for parents and teachers, and hundreds of new storybooks. And working with GSK, we’ve developed an antiseptic gel that could save 422,000 babies’ lives in five years.

“Every child has the right to feel safe, to go to school and not to fear anything,” says 13-year-old Nabila. It’s voices like hers that shape everything we do and say. We empower children to speak for themselves, share their stories and amplify their voices. As well as championing young activists, we listen to children who aren’t in the spotlight, so their important stories don’t go unheard.

Save the Children’s work is only possible thanks to our 5 million supporters in the UK and their amazing commitment – from wearing a Christmas jumper to running our local shops to organising fundraising events.

Together with children, supporters and partners, we fight to help every child become who they want to be.

Find out more