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30% of Turkey’s population is comprised of children reports the statistical agency. Referring to the end of 2012, total population of the country was 75 627 384, and child population was 22 692 174. Child population, which includes 0-17 age group according to the definition of the United Nations, was 45% of the total population in 1935; this percentage was 30% in 2012.
When the age structure of child population was examined, 27.3% of children were in the age group of 0-4, 27.1% in age group of 5-9, 28.6% in age group of 10-14 and 16.9% in age group of 15-17. It’s seen that there is no significant change throughout time and between genders regarding these ratios. The proportion of the children is estimated to fall to 25.7% in 2023 and to 19.1% in 2050 and to 17.6% in 2075 Pronatalist policies to increase fertility and population which were applied in our country from the declaration of the Republic to 1965 led to an increase in the child population. As a result of improvements in health and living conditions, important decreases in infant and child mortality was experienced. All these developments led to an increase in the child population until the 1970s. After that, urbanization, rising educational attainment of women, active participation of women in working life caused reduction in fertility and postponement of births. These changes decreased the proportion of children in the population. This continuous decrease shows that the population is aging. Assuming that this trend will continue, proportion of children in the total population will decrease significantly in the coming years. In contrast, proportion of the elderly will increase. On the other hand, in Turkey proportion of children and proportion of young population are still higher than the developed countries.The proportion of children in the total population of the European Union member countries was 19, this proportion was 30.8% in Turkey in 2010When the proportion of the children in the total population was analyzed according to countries, it was seen that the highest proportion of children was in France with 22.2% in 2010, the lowest proportion of children was in Germany with 16.5%.Among the Statistical Regions Level 1 Southeast Anatolia and among the provinces Şırnak had the highest children proportion When the proportion of children in the total population was analyzed according to Statistical Region Level 1, it was seen that the region with the highest children proportion was Southeast Anatolia with 43.7%. West Marmara was the region with the lowest proportion of children with 22.4%.Şırnak Turkey had the highest proportion of children in 2012 with 49%. Şırnak was followed by Şanlıurfa with 48.3% and Ağrı with 46.7%. The first three provinces with the lowest proportion of children were Tunceli with 18%, Edirne with 20% and Çanakkale with 20.2%.
Each year, approximately 1 million 250 thousand babies are born in Turkey. According to the birth statistics the number of births was 1 237 172 in 2011. Among these, 51.4% was boys and 48.6% was girls. No significant change is observed regarding the proportion of the gender of the newborn. Sex ratio at birth was 105.7 in 2011. It shows that about 106 boys were born for 100 girls.
94% of the babies were born in hospitals or medical establishments according to the Ministry of Health, the proportion of births in hospitals or medical establishments was 75% in 2002. This increased to 94% in 2011. When the proportion of births in hospitals or medical establishments was analyzed by SR level 1, it was seen that Western Anatolia had the highest proportion with 98% and Eastern Anatolia had the lowest proportion with 84%.Infant mortality rate has decreased in Turkey. The infant mortality rate (IMR) is the ratio of the number of deaths among children less than one year old during a given year to the number of live births during the same year. While the infant mortality rate was 13.8 per thousand in 2009, this rate decreased to 11.6 per thousand in 2012. Infant mortality rate is higher in boys than girls. During 2009-2012 periods, IMR reduced from 14.6 per thousand to 12.1 per thousand for boys and decreased from 13 per thousand to 11.1 per thousand for girls.When IMR was analyzed by provinces, it was observed that the province with the highest infant mortality rate was Malatya with 19.5 per thousand. Kırklareli was the province with the lowest infant mortality rate with 6.1 per thousand.The proportion of households, in Turkey, with at least one child in 0-17 age group was 54.2% in 2012. The highest proportion was in Şırnak with 82.6 %. Şırnak was followed by Hakkari with 82.4% and Van with 81.8%. The lowest proportion of households was in Çanakkale with 37.7%. Çanakkale was followed by Sinop with 38.2% and Tunceli with 38.8%. While the proportion of children in the 0-5 age group, being cared for by their mothers was 89.6%, 1.5% was cared for by their fathers. On the other hand, 4.8% of children were cared for by their paternal grandmothers and 3.5% of them were cared for by their maternal grandmothers.Turkey's employment rate for children of age group 6-17 was 5.9% in 2012. While 49.2% of children were engaged in household chores, 44.9% of them were not working. While employment rate in 6-14 age group was 2.6%, employment rate in 15-17 age group was 15.6%. Employment rate of boys in 6-17 age group was 7.9%, this rate was 3.7% for girls. Within this age group, 91.5% of children were attending school, while 8.5% of children were not attending any school in 2012. Source; Statistical Agency
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