In 2021, UNICEF partnered with the Young and Resilient Research Centre at Western Sydney University to bring the voices of children to the forefront through participatory food systems dialogues in 18 countries around the world, from Cambodia to Kenya, and from Turkey to the United Kingdom.

Over 700 children and adolescents aged 10-19 from significantly diverse backgrounds participated in two-and-a-half-hour workshops to share their lived experiences, insights, and perspectives on food systems. These workshops, designed to be as inclusive as possible, focused on food systems and food poverty and/or on food systems and climate change. In a series of fun, engaging and participatory activities, children answered questions, mapped food systems, and discussed multiple food systems issues with their peers.

These workshops helped the researchers to understand children’s views and perspectives on food systems; the key challenges to attaining nutritious, safe, desirable, and sustainable food; and how children want food systems to change. Additionally, in May 2021, UNICEF conducted U-Report polls involving 22,561 children and youth in 23 a countries who reported on their experiences of food systems and food environments.

This report documents the key insights of the 18 food systems dialogues with children, as well as the outcomes of the U-Report polls. Key findings from the dialogues are summarised in this report.

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