Child Friendly Cities is a relatively new concept in Iran, however, there is a long-standing tradition of child-friendly practices and initiatives. For instance, Tehran Municipality launched the School Mayor Initiative in 1993 which is still running today. After the devastating 2003 earthquake in Bam, UNICEF, in collaboration with the Government, supported 110 children from 11 schools in Bam to develop a child-friendly neighbourhood plan and created a child-friendly zone, which included the building of a child-friendly community centre, school, and playgrounds in the city.

UNICEF is working closely with the Ministry of Interior (MoI) in Iran to create a network of Child Friendly Cities and Communities across Iran to help urban planners and communities to respond to complex problems by placing children and adolescents at the centre of their solutions. With its partners, UNICEF Iran and MoI are strengthening the capacity of municipalities and other national and local stakeholders by co-facilitating a multi-year, multi-municipality capacity building programme. Many other ministries and organizations including the Municipalities and Rural Management Organization of Iran and the Office for Women and Family Affairs (MoI) are supporting these efforts.

As a first step, UNICEF Iran and MoI in cooperation with Isfahan Municipality held the First National Conference on Child Friendly Citieson 16-17 of January 2019 in Isfahan, Iran where urban managers, CFCI focal points, and representatives from municipalities across Iran joined the debate to discuss the potential of CFCs.

In 2020, a public call was issued inviting municipalities across Iran to apply for piloting the CFCI. Over 40 cities that responded to the call were assessed through a transparent process. Currently, UNICEF and the MoI are working together to pilot 12 other cities with different sizes and geographical regions in Iran.


Population: 83,075,000 (2019)
Pop. under 18: 23,330,000 (2019)

Source: Based on the estimates and forecast of the Statistical Centre of Iran


Candidate City:
• Isfahan



Vida Montakhab
Head of Partnerships and Resource Mobilization Section

Amir Rahdari
Partnerships Officer (CFCI focal point)