Kiribati has taken an important step towards protecting its children and women with the launch of its first set of nationally representative data. The Kiribati Social Development Indicator Survey (KSDIS), which was supported by UNICEF’s MICS programme, is the most comprehensive to date, enabling Kiribati to monitor progress on key areas impacting children’s and women’s lives. These areas include: health; education; nutrition; water, sanitation and hygiene; and protection. Important details on the lives of Kiribati’s more than 70,000 children and women are now widely understood, paving the way for them to be adequately represented in national planning.
“Kiribati has achieved a major milestone with this survey, being the first in the region and leading the way for neighbouring Pacific countries,” said Vice President of the Republic of Kiribati, H.E. Dr. Teuea Toatu. “[This enables us] to prioritize our efforts to focus on the most in need, allocate the resources required to make progress, and plan so that all I-Kiribati children are able to survive, thrive and realize their full potential.”
The survey teams travelled to remote areas by various modes of transportation to reach households for interviews, including boats and planes. Data were collected with the help of innovative digital technology aimed at improving quality and producing results rapidly.
Data coverage is poor across the Pacific, particularly on youth and women. Little is known about important issues affecting their lives, like reproductive health and gender-based violence. The MICS survey results are poised to change this, providing the essential disaggregated data to steer government policies that make lives healthier and safer.
Data were collected by the Government of Kiribati, with technical support from UNICEF and UNFPA as well as generous support from the Government of Australia. Following Kiribati’s lead, Samoa, Tonga and Tuvalu are currently conducting their own MICS surveys.