Saint Paul, Minn.—Andrew Carlson, associate professor in Metropolitan State University’s School of Communication, Writing and the Arts, is supporting the mission of UNICEF USA with research on children’s rights and wellbeing in the United States. The research and analysis team, led by Rain Barrel Communications, a New-York based communication consulting organization, has recently completed work on an analytic report with recommendations for UNICEF USA’s advocacy and engagement work in the United States. The organization plans to publish parts of the report later this year at unicefusa.org.
The research and report will provide UNICEF USA with an analysis of children’s wellbeing across five thematic areas: health and nutrition, education, protection, clean environments, and equity. The resulting advocacy and engagement strategies that will be implemented by UNICEF USA will improve the wellbeing of children and provide support for parents, caregivers, and others who are responsible for fulfilling the rights of children.
The United States ranks 37thof 41 industrialized countries in fulfillment of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals related to the wellbeing of children. Across multiple indicators of child wellbeing, including poverty, food security, birthweight, vaccination rates, infant mortality, and others, the United States ranks below the majority of industrialized countries.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to support an organization like UNICEF USA with research and analysis on the situation of children in the United States,” Carlson says. “The report will have far reaching consequences for the organization as it determines how to expand its advocacy and engagement in the United States, a country in which it was previously known mainly as a fundraiser. The report has identified several areas in which UNICEF USA will be able to contribute to children’s well-being in the United States. I have also appreciated the support of my colleagues at Metropolitan State, who have supported me in my work with UNICEF USA and on several other global projects related to children’s rights and well-being.”
Carlson is an associate professor of communication at Metropolitan State University, where he has taught for 8 years. His area of expertise is communication for development, also known as C4D.
“Dr. Carlson‘s work will contribute to the well-being of children in the US. Metropolitan State has a deep commitment to partnering with the community, and in this case, we can partner with UNICEF USA for the betterment of a national community,” says Craig Hansen, dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Metropolitan State University. “Dr. Carlson takes these experiences and brings them to the classroom, where his students experience and insight. This kind of work benefits everyone.”
Carlson’s research contribution is part of a global UNICEF effort to strengthen and recognize engagement of UNICEF country programs on issue that affect children in their countries. The research offers UUSA a data-driven approach to focus key domestic advocacy priorities and inform strategy around legislative advocacy campaigns, grassroots volunteer engagement, strategic partnerships and marketing efforts. It will help to further align advocacy and fundraising efforts around UNICEF global priorities, and strengthen the ability to deliver results for children, as outlined in the vision of UNICEF UNITE:
To reach a day when children in the United States and around the world can be healthy, learn, play and be empowered to speak up and take action to build they world they want.
UNICEF USA is the premiere child rights and welfare organization in the United States and provides the largest block of financial support for UNICEF’s global work with children.
Metropolitan State University, a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, is the Twin Cities’ public, urban, comprehensive state university providing lifelong learning, and competitive academic and professional degree programs at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels.