Founded in 1937, Plan International is one of the oldest and largest children's development organisations in the world. We work in over 60 countries worldwide to create lasting change for children and their communities. Everything we do is based on our firm commitment to children and ensuring they can claim their rights.

Plan has been promoting Universal Birth Registration (UBR) since 1998 through advocacy at national and international levels, by raising awareness within communities and by building civil registration capacity in-country. In 2005, Kofi Annan, then Secretary General of the UN and Archbishop Desmond Tutu officially launched Plan’s global campaign on UBR.

Over the last 10 years, our Count Every Child initiative contributed to the registration of more than 40 million children in 32 countries and for improving birth registration legislation in 30% of the targeted countries.

We have achieved a lot but we also have learned a lot. In 2012 Plan embarked on a new direction for Count Every Child interventions – Birth Registration as an integral part of Civil Registration and Vital Statistics and currently Plan is the leading INGO on birth registration as part of CRVS, recognised as a leading expert on the issue, as well as an innovator in recognition of programmes such as Digital Birth Registration.

We work with governments, UN agencies and the private sector to improve birth registration services as part of effective, comprehensive and rights based CRVS systems.

 What are our unique role and capacities?

• WORKING ON THE DEMAND SIDE - recognized as a key global barrier to civil registration
Due to our longstanding local presence in communities we understand the needs and motivations of beneficiaries, hence we offer a unique viewpoint to increase demand for registration services.

• REPRESENTING AND REACHING THE MOST MARGINALIZED – Plan International’s new research highlights the fact that the most affected by lack of registration are the most vulnerable.

We are trusted agents at the community level and well positioned to play a key role in helping governments to reach the hard-to-reach and marginalised population.

• ENSURING CRVS is not just well-functioning but also rights based – our role is to ensure that civil registration in developing countries is consistent with human rights principles and standards; we need to ensure that efforts to increase birth registration do not have any adverse impacts on the enjoyment of other rights, and address these instances in both advocacy and programming.

• Implementing innovative programmes such as  Digital Birth Registration –  the DBR programme helps governments to improve birth registration rates and reach the most vulnerable through the appropriate use of technology and strengthened CRVS systems. By proving an innovative and community-based model of birth registration, this can then be scaled at a national level, allowing all boys and girls to access their right to a legal identity through a functioning rights-based national CRVS system.

For more information:

Countries with activities: 
Afghanistan, American Samoa, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Cook Islands (the), India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Samoa, Sri Lanka, Viet Nam
Type of Organisation: 
Non-Government Organisation