Cities4Children Blog

This is our platform for sharing insights, ideas for actions, conversations and innovations that make cities better for children and young people.

Lusaka, Zambia is making roads safer for children

Road SafetyIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, May 7, 2024, 5 min

It’s Road Safety Week. We’re featuring Lusaka, Zambia, winner of the 2023 Vision Zero for Youth Award, and the impressive actions taken by the city to improve road safety for children since 2017. Road traffic crashes are a leading cause of death and injury for children and youth According to the World Health Organization, road Read more →

Catalytic public spaces: UN-Habitat’s Global Public Space Programme

Catalytic public spaces blog
Public SpaceIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, April 9, 2024, 7 min

The third blog in our ‘Public Space for Children’ series provides an overview of UN-Habitat’s ongoing 12-year Global Public Space Programme (GPSP) with a focus on interventions, tools and guidance that make public spaces better for children. In case you missed them, the first blog of the series spotlights public space interventions by our member Read more →

Her City: Empowering girls to shape cities Her way

Urban SafetyIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, March 8, 2024, 8 min

What can you do to make cities places where girls and young women feel safe, valued, comfortable, empowered and experience equitable access to the city? Read our 2nd blog in the Public Space for Children blog series to learn more. In case you missed it, the first blog of the series spotlights public space interventions Read more →

Three pathways towards child-friendly cities

Tim Gill blog - GDCI
Inclusive Urban PlanningIdeas4Action

Tim Gill, February 20, 2024, 9 min

With growing worldwide interest in making cities more child-friendly, what approaches can municipalities take? Tim Gill sets out three models for local governments and explores the pros and cons of each. Child-friendly urban planning and design means taking children’s needs and wishes seriously when building or changing neighbourhoods, especially their public realm. Drawing on ideas Read more →

3 courses to kickstart your learning towards Cities for Children in 2024

Inclusive Urban PlanningIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, January 24, 2024, 6 min

Are you an activist, built-environment practitioner, caregiver, or city official, who wants to improve your city or neighbourhood for children? It’s a new year – how about starting it off by doing a course on making cities safer, cleaner and greener for children. In this article we feature three online open access courses that introduce Read more →

Making public spaces better for children: a new blog series

Public SpaceIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, December 4, 2023, 8 min

Public spaces are crucial for children’s holistic development and wellbeing. Our new blog series showcases how public spaces can be made better for children. Using global examples from Cities4Children members and other initiatives, our aim is to spotlight ideas for action, innovation, programmes, policies and practice that make public spaces child friendly. Why are public Read more →

A Global Action Plan to transform slums and help children thrive was approved: but where is the money?

Global Action Plan Slum upgrading children
Informal SettlementsIdeas4Action

Urban Hub Team at Save the Children International, October 31, 2023, 8 min

Over 1 billion people – including close to 500 million children – live in slums and informal settlements, mostly in cities in Africa, Asia and Latin America. In 2023, the UN-Habitat Assembly approved a historic new Global Action Plan to accelerate transforming these informal settlements and slums. This plan aligns with Sustainable Development Goal 11 Read more →

Shifting Power to Youth in Urban Programming


Andy Nilsen, September 13, 2023, 10 min

Andy Nilsen is the creator and Global Director of Shift, an innovative campaign accelerator model aimed at young activists aged 14-25, housed within Save the Children. In this piece, Nilsen delves into the origins of Shift and showcases standout urban campaigns from across the world, all nurtured by Shift. One Sunday morning, looking down from Read more →

Urban heat and children: What’s at stake and how can cities do better?

Urban Heat and Children

Cities4Children, July 25, 2023, 9 min

The world is getting warmer. That much is clear. Recent reports highlight that 2023 is likely to be the hottest year on record, with heatwaves and extreme heat affecting people globally. Extreme heat is a genuine threat to life and impacts the vulnerable – the very young and the elderly – most of all. A Read more →

Three examples of safe area-based facilities that improve the lives of urban children in disadvantaged settings

Children at a MAC engaged in arts and crafts activities
Informal SettlementsIdeas4Action

Cities4Children, June 13, 2023, 9 min

In dense, unplanned, and disadvantaged urban areas like slums and informal settlements, safe places and facilities where children can come together to learn, play, and access resources can be crucial for their health, development and wellbeing. In this blog, we share three types of facilities that deliver much-needed integrated services for children, young people and Read more →

Child-friendly street transformations improve neighbourhood quality of life

Road SafetyIdeas4Action

Anna Siprikova, May 16, 2023, 8 min

Children experience street infrastructure uniquely. However, how we design streets doesn’t always consider children’s needs. This blog spotlights two successful street interventions in Fortaleza, Brazil and Santiago, Chile, which made streets more safe, active and sociable, benefitting children and adults. The Global Designing Cities Initiative (GDCI) Streets for Kids team is a group of urban Read more →

Revisiting Streets for Life #Love30

Road SafetyIdeas4Action

Cities4Children, May 9, 2023, 5 min

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), road traffic crashes are the leading cause of death for children and young people aged 5 to 29 years. One of the most effective strategies to reduce road traffic crashes is to reduce speed limits to 30 km per hour or lower in areas where vulnerable road users Read more →