Introduction The United Nations Secretary-General's Study on Violence against Children has been a global effort to paint a detailed picture of the nature, extent and causes of violence against children, and to propose clear recommendations for action to prevent and respond to it. This is the first time that an attempt has been made to document the reality of violence against children around the world, and to map out what is being done to stop it. Since 2003, many thousands of people have contributed to the study in consultations and working groups, through questionnaires and in other ways. Children and young people have been active at every level. On 11 October 2006, the UN General Assembly will consider the study's findings and recommendations.