A child's first birthday is a very special landmark. Perhaps this is especially so in situations where many children die in the first few weeks and months of life. Infant mortality is a key indicator of the health of a nation. It tends to be highest in the poorest countries.
In England and Wales the number of infant deaths has been steadily declining. The infant mortality rate in 2010 was 4.2 deaths per 1000 live births, which is about 1 in 250. In stark contrast, according to Christian Aid's 'Count Your Blessings' Lent calendar today 1 in 6 babies in Afghanistan do not live to see their first birthday.
Afghanistan is one of the poorest countries in the world. Christian Aid has been working in Afghanistan for 3 decades under 4 different regimes. It works through Afghan partner organisations focusing on protecting rights in conflict, increasing food security and promoting the rights of women. You can read more about this work here.
Christian Aid suggests you give 1p for every birthday you have celebrated. So that's...between me and my Christian Aid kitty.
Image: 1st Birthday Party: morgueFile free photo adapted