Children in the Netherlands are among the happiest in the world. Here's what parents do differently
Children in the Netherlands are among the happiest in the world, a study has suggested, and experts say there could be a number of reasons why this happens.
A UNICEF report published last year found that children in the Netherlands had the highest sense of well-being. The United Nations Children’s Agency analyzed the data in 41 high-income countries, ranking the countries according to how they scored on children’s mental well-being, physical health and the development of academic and social skills.
The Netherlands ranked first with three welfare scores, followed by Denmark and Norway respectively.
Chile, Bulgaria and the US were at the bottom of the list.
Anita Cleare, author of The Working Parent's Survival Guide, told CNBC that it was important to understand the role of socioeconomic factors in influencing children's happiness. She explained that if a child meets certain needs, which is more likely in a rich country, there is a greater chance of achieving happiness.
Cleare said a secure parenting style that sets "clear boundaries with lots of love and warmth ... has consistently been shown to be associated with positive outcomes for children."
In addition, Cleare said that shame can be really harmful to children and that the Dutch have a reputation for being open to talking about topics that may be considered more uncomfortable to discuss in other countries.
The UNICEF report also stressed that not all children living in rich countries have a good childhood.
"Even countries with good social, economic and environmental conditions are far from achieving the objectives set in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development," UNICEF said in the report.
Për të luftuar këto mangësi, UNICEF-i u bëri thirrje vendeve me të ardhura të larta të konsultohen me fëmijët se si mund të përmirësohet jeta e tyre dhe të sigurojnë integrimin e politikave për të rritur mirëqenien e tyre. UNICEF rekomandoi gjithashtu që vendet të përshpejtojnë përpjekjet për të përmbushur Objektivat e Zhvillimit të Qëndrueshëm, si ulja e varfërisë dhe përmirësimi i aksesit në kujdesin ndaj fëmijëve.
Shkollimi jo konkurrues
Cleare tha se holandezët kishin një reputacion për “vlerësimin e diversitetit duke qenë shumë përfshirës”.
Kjo lloj përqasjeje ndaj prindërimit ishte e rëndësishme, tha ajo, duke pasur parasysh se sa shumë presion hasin fëmijët tani si në aspektin akademik, ashtu edhe në atë social, për sa i përket mediave sociale.
UNICEF research showed that 81% of 15-year-olds in the Netherlands thought they were able to make friends easily, which was one of the highest rates among the 41 countries included in the document. He also showed that for 15-year-olds instead of having a high sense of school belonging, life satisfaction turned out to be higher.