The best countries for kids: Can you guess where Canada ranks?
TheGlobeandMail.com – lufe/the-hot-button
25 July 2012. Amanda Kwan
If you have children or are thinking of starting a family, you may want to move overseas.
Specifically to Japan, where, according to a new report by Save the Children, it is the best place in the world to be a kid.
In second place is Spain, followed by Germany, Italy and France. Canada comes in at No. 6, ahead of Switzerland, Norway, U.K. and the Netherlands. Meanwhile, our chest-pounding southern neighbour doesn’t even make the top 10.
Save the Children launched the Child Development Index (CDI) in 2008 as a way of tracking the progress of children’s well-being across the globe. Released every few years, the study ranks how child-friendly a country is based on three factors: health, education and nutrition. It measures the number of children who are in school, the chances of a child dying before the age of five and the number of underweight children. The lower the index score, the higher the country’s ranking.
As Time points out, Japan’s low score of 0.35 “proves its advanced state of childhood education and medicine.” At the bottom of the list, with a score of 54.0, is war-torn Somalia.
According to the 2012 CDI, the lives of children around the world, on average, have improved by more than 30 per cent. While the rate of progress in the developed world was faster at the turn of the century, the rate in developing nations increased during the 2000s and overtook rich countries, the report says. But inequalities still remain, “with children born in rich countries eight times better off than those in developing countries.”