Sweden tops child welfare ranking

Sweden tops child welfare ranking
When it comes to caring for children, Sweden ranks highest among the world’s wealthy countries, according to a new report from the United Nations children’s organization, Unicef.

The report compares OECD countries, as well as Slovenia, on ten different criteria, including parental leave, access to quality preschools, funding for childcare, and the frequency of child poverty.

Of the 25 countries included in the study, Sweden is the only one which meets all ten of Unicef’s recommended benchmarks.

“Most children in Sweden say themselves that things are good and if you compare us internationally, we’ve come a long way,” said Children’s Ombudsman (Barnombudsmannen – BO) Fredrik Malmberg to the TT news agency.

“But for those children in our country who are worse off there’s no solace in knowing that others are better off. Support to parents who can’t manage their role varies a great deal depending on where in the country you live.”

Malmberg added there are several problems which remain to be solved in order to improve the situation for all of Sweden’s children.

In its report, Unicef stresses the importance of childcare and preschool as important tools in mitigating the negative effects of poor environment at home.

“That’s clearly the case. Preschool is an important and positive support especially when adults have a hard time with their role as parents,” said Malmberg.