The Jakarta Post
Save the Children's End of Childhood Report 2018, released in June, ranks Indonesia 105th of the 175 countries surveyed. (Shutterstock/File)
Indonesia ranks 105th in the recently released Save the Children's annual global index, which examined 175 countries on a range of indicators concerning factors that rob children of their childhood.
The international non-governmental organization launched in June its "Many Faces of Exclusion: End of Childhood Report 2018", its second annual End of Childhood Index, which looks at indicators such as child marriage, teenage pregnancy and child mortality.
In the report, Indonesia stands in stark contrast to neighbor Singapore, which ranks first on the list. The archipelago also trails behind several other Southeast Asian countries, including Malaysia (67th), Brunei Darussalam (68th), Thailand (85th) and Vietnam (96th), with the Philippines ranking just above it at 104th.
The countries in the region that rank after Indonesia are Myanmar (107th), Cambodia (118th) and Timor Leste (128th).
The report has found that approximately 36 percent of all children under 5 in Indonesia suffer from child stunting.
Its data also shows that around 26 of 1,000 children do not live to celebrate their fifth birthday.
Inequality remains rampant in the country, where girls from impoverished families are six times more likely to give birth at a young age than girls from wealthy families.
The report further highlights that around 14 percent of school-aged children in Indonesia do not have access to education.
Seperately, Selina Sumbung, the head of Save the Children partner Sayangi Tunas Cilik Foundation (YSTC), said that one in seven children dropped out of school or had never attended school.
"This places these children at a disadvantage from the beginning of their lives," Selina said recently, as quoted by kompas.com.
Several factors that contributed to the education crisis ranged from poverty to poor nutrition, including high stunting rates, she said. Children living in remote areas, for example, faced additional obstacles in accessing education because of a lack of facilities for children with disabilities. Selina stressed that education was a basic right for all children, regardless of the condition in which they were born and raised.
"It is important for all children to attend school and learn, play and participate in society," Selina said.
YSTC advocacy and campaign director Tata Sudrajat said that in addressing these issues, the foundation, along with the Education and Culture Ministry, had launched the "Semua Anak Bisa Sekolah" (all children can go to school) campaign in May.
"We hope that, together with the nation as a whole, [the campaign target] can be realized by 2030 and that all school-aged children can receive free and affordable education, as well as [achieve] equality for all children," said Tata. (liz/mut)
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