2017 End of Childhood Report
Childhood should be the time when our nation’s youngest citizens are safe to learn, play and grow. A time to develop into the adults who will one day care for and lead our country, our world, and our future. Yet for millions of children in the United States – and hundreds of millions more children around the world – childhood is ending too soon.
Save the Children’s new global report, 2017 End of Childhood Report: Stolen Childhoods, examines “childhood enders”– events and factors that rob children of their childhoods, such as child marriage, infant mortality, extreme violence and displacement by war or conflict.
The End of Childhood Report places the United States 36th worldwide for childhood - well behind other developed nations including Norway, France, the United Kingdom, Portugal, Spain, Japan, Lithuania, and Greece. America ranks right between Bosnia and Russia - you can see the full index by reading our End of Childhood Report.
To better understand the factors that lead to incomplete childhoods across the United States, we examined domestic childhood enders and ranked all 50 states on where childhood is most intact and where it is most threatened.
*Children often experience more than one childhood ender. See Methodology and Research Notes for details.
The Best and Worst Places to Be a Child in the U.S.
In every state, children living in disadvantaged communities struggle to survive and succeed. Here is map showing the best and worst states to be a child. To see the full state by state-by-state ranking, read our U.S. report.
A Surprise They'll Never Forget
We asked three children to unbox new toys for us - it didn’t go as planned. Watch what happened. To learn more go to EndofChildhood.org.
The Factors That End Childhood
Our global and U.S. reports look at events and circumstances that end childhood too soon for more than 700 million children around the world. The following, from our U.S. report, highlights some of the reasons why childhoods end in America. To see more on childhood enders, download the report.
I Felt Like I Had Nobody
When Breanne told her family she was expecting her first child, she was met with shock and disappointment. She was only 15 years old at the time. Her small town community didn’t embrace her either. “Going to school pregnant made me an outcast. You have to grow up fast because you’re responsible for a little life,” she says.
Her commitment to her children, however, is unwavering. She’s doing the best for her kids and her youngest children, Jesse and Serenity, who participate in Save the Children’s early childhood education programs.
“Kids living in poverty can’t really even be kids because they see drugs, drinking and guns. It steals their childhood. When you grow up poor, you have to deal with the tough reality of life before you’re ready. I work hard every day to make things better for my kids than it was for me,” Breanne shares.
“In the end, it’s worth it because you have your baby. Feeling that love makes everything better.”
Our Work Across the U.S.
Save the Children began working in the United States in 1932, serving Appalachia’s hardest-hit children and families during the Great Depression. Today, we implement our programs in more than 150 of the most remote and vulnerable communities across the country. We seek to ensure that despite the gaps in education and health, all children have the best chance for success. Our programming is grounded in creating connections between family, school and community maximizing impact on children’s learning, literacy development and ultimately, success in life. Our commitment to reach every last child is evidenced by our work across rural America.
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