Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
To mark the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Arigatou International is preparing Faith and Children’s Rights: A Multi-religious Study on the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
This study examines the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) from the perspective of seven major religions, identifies the important role played by religious communities in advancing the rights and well-being of children over the past 30 years, seeks to identify the common values shared among different religions and the CRC and promotes continued action by religious communities to further implement the CRC in the future.
The full report on the results of the CRC Study will be released on November 20, 2019, the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the CRC. This is also the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children, an Arigatou International initiative.
Arigatou International presented a Preview of the CRC Study during the Kofi Annan Faith Briefing, a side event of the recent UN High Level Political Forum in New York on July 15 and we are pleased to share it:
The last of a series of Roundtable Discussions on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence was held in Brasilia on 24 June 2019, and brought together more than 70 participants from several religious communities, experts on early childhood and child protection coming from civil society and faith-based organizations, as well as government representatives.
Within the framework of the #StopCyberbullyingDay, a 24-hour online conference held on 22 June 2019, gathered the voices of the youth, the academia, teachers, journalists, and lawmakers, as well as representatives of social organizations, families, technology entrepreneurs and governments worldwide to create a global conversation about Cyberbullying and Bullying, one of the issues that worries the youth nowadays.
Under the theme “Advancing evidence-based action to end violence against children through INSPIRE dissemination, implementation and monitoring,” more than 150 professionals and representatives of organizations working to prevent violence against children met in for the 1st INSPIRE Implementation Jamboree in Kampala, Uganda.
The meeting, which was held on 24-25 June 2019, took stock of how violence prevention stakeholders at global, regional and national levels are making use of the INSPIRE technical package to inform their plans for collective action and of advances in efforts to implement and evaluate specific interventions from each of the strategies, with a special focus upon adaptation, scaling up and capacity development.
In the framework of its collaboration with UNESCO, Arigatou International – Geneva lead a training workshop on how to integrate transformative pedagogies into education systems as a tool for promoting peacebuilding, resilience and the prevention of violent extremism.
The workshop, which was organized from 6 to 10 May 2019, by UNESCO's Multisectoral Regional Office for West Africa (Sahel) and the “Institut de la Francophonie pour l'éducation et la formation” took place in Niamey, Niger, bringing together representatives of the Ministries of Primary and Secondary Education of Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Senegal.
Following a Facilitator Training Workshop that took place at the end of 2017 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, over 1,300 children and youth from 17 madrasas, primary and secondary schools have been reached by the Learning to Live Together Programme.
During the workshop, 28 teachers and youth mentors who have been working with youth from the Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC) Peace Clubs were trained on how to use the Learning to Live Together Programme in their schools and organizations. As a result, 900 children aged 12 to 17 have been reached by the systematic implementation of the Programme in 12 schools, and another 400 children have been reached through different activities based on the Programme that have been carried out by their teachers.
The International Step by Step Association (ISSA), a network that connects professionals and NGO's working in the field of early childhood development (ECD), organized on 18-19 June 2019 their Annual ISSA Conference, which welcomed 396 professionals from 61 countries under the theme “Nurturing Environments for the Wellbeing of Children and Their Family.”
The two-day meeting, which took place in Leiden, Netherlands presented a unique opportunity for researchers, practitioners, policy makers, parents and NGOs from around the world to explore themes on EDC through insightful discussions and interactive sessions, while sharing their wisdom and solutions.
Twenty-five children aged 15 to 18 participated in the implementation of the Learning to Live Together Programme in Uruguay, thanks to the efforts made by three facilitators from Youth for Christ, a worldwide Christian movement working with young people around the globe.
Arigatou International – Geneva participated in an Experience Sharing Workshop on the project: "Youth Empowerment for Peace and Resilience Building and Prevention of Violent Extremism in African Countries through Teacher Development," organized by the UNESCO International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (IICBA), on 29-30 April 2019.
A series of pilot workshops with young children are being held in different parts of the world, as part of the two-year process to adapt the Learning to Live Together Programme to middle childhood years. After reaching 70 children in Kenya and Portugal, two new workshops were held in Romania and El Salvador.
On November 20, 2019, the international community will mark the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC30), the most comprehensive treaty on the rights of children which has been ratified by virtually all UN Members States.
The enormous success of the CRC has resulted in numerous laws being enacted including national constitutions, and policies, programs, and budgets being adopted that benefit children. It has also spurred notable achievements in health, education and child protection all of which have improved the lives of all children in many parts of the world.
For this occasion, Arigatou International, in close collaboration with the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Violence against Children (SRSG) has initiated a Study from a multi-religious perspective with experts on child rights, religious leaders and scholars that includes a review of the CRC since its adoption. The Study is also being developed in collaboration with UNICEF and other key partners.
With a strong call to action to work together for a future of dignity, prosperity and peace for children, Dr. Daniel Muvengi, Regional Director of World Vision Kenya, opened the National Roundtable Discussion on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence that was held on 28 and 29 May, 2019, in Nairobi, Kenya.
The two-day event brought together more than 80 participants, including religious leaders, representatives from civil society organizations, government and multilateral agencies, and academia, presenting an excellent opportunity to discuss the magnitude and impact of violence in early childhood, and to identify actions to transform social and cultural norms that condone violence and that support parents and caregivers.
Ms. María Lucía Uribe represented Arigatou International at the General Assembly of Members of the International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD), which gathered its 105 current members from 1 to 3 May 2019, in Copenhagen, Denmark.
More than 700 children from West Kenya are expected to be reached by the Learning to Live Together Programme after Sixty-four teachers from the counties of Baringo and Elgeyo-Marakwet participated in a 4-day Facilitator Training Workshop on the use of the Programme.
In an increasingly globalized world, where the religious landscape is constantly evolving, discussing the right of the child to self-determination in religious beliefs and the extent of the role of the parents and caregivers in guiding them has become an urgent issue.
Several religious leaders and representatives from Permanent Missions to the United Nations Office in Geneva and faith-inspired organizations gathered at a conference titled Promoting Peace Together on May 21, 2019, to reflect on the importance of education for peace and interfaith dialogue.
The Learning to Live Together Programme (LTLT) has reached over 300 students and teachers in Sri Lanka and India over the past year, thanks to the efforts of facilitators Kaviya Balaguruswamy and Parthipan Palanisamy. The workshops in Sri Lanka were held in Colombo, Kilinochchi, and Nuwaraeliya, and in Coimbatore in India.
Arigatou International, in close collaboration with the Office of the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General on Violence against Children (SRSG) and other key partners, has initiated a study which consists of a review of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) from a multi-religious perspective. The primary authors of the study include distinguished academics specialized in the field of child’s rights, former chairpersons of the CRC Committee, as well as religious scholars from various faiths and backgrounds.
The Learning to Live Together (LTLT) Programme has reached around 55 students from Macedonia in the past year, thanks to the efforts and commitment of Ms. Irena Fejsko, English Teacher, and Ms. Arbana Pasholli, Psychologist at the “28 November Community High School”.
The International Consortium on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence against Children, which was launched in August 2018 by Arigatou International and its partners, is continuing its activities with a set of roundtables hosted by various members of the Consortium in different countries.
In February, Arigatou International – Geneva attended the World Innovation Summit for Education’s biennial, or WISE@Paris, which was held in Paris on 20-21 February 2019. WISE is an international, multi-sectoral platform for creative thinking, debate, and purposeful action for new approaches to education, launched in 2009 by the Qatar Foundation.
Following the calls from our network of educators for the adaptation of the Learning to Live Together (LTLT) Programme to middle childhood years, Arigatou International – Geneva is continuing the two-year process of adaptation of the Programme. The first two pilots in this process took place in Lisbon, Portugal, 8-10 February, and Nairobi, Kenya, 18-23 February.
In light of the 40th session of the Human Rights Council, Arigatou International co-organized together with several partners, a side event to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: “Ending Violence Against Children – The Contributions from Religious Communities”, on 6 March 2019. The event was attended by over 100 people and more than 20 representatives from Permanent Missions to the United Nations in Geneva.
“There is no hope for peace without knowledge, which awakens us to our shared identity and connectedness as human beings”, said Mr. Anantanand Rambachan, Professor of Religion at St. Olaf College (US) and Columnist at Huffington Post.
The first-ever International Day of Education was celebrated on 24 January 2019, to recognize that inclusive and quality education is a human right and a crucial component to building a world free of poverty, achieving gender equality, and creating a better world. It is also the focus of the fourth Sustainable Development Goal, "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all." To honor this commemoration, a panel discussion on Education for Peace and Development was held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.