AFRC INDIA is preparing to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Children`s Rights Convention on the 20th of November. The event will be attended by media persons, students and members of the general public. During the program a radio message from RADIJOJO Children`s Radio, Germany will be played. The event is co organised by Peace Gong Kerala, GRAMA Media School, RADIJOJO and AFRC INDIA.
What is Convention on the Rights of the Child ?
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (commonly abbreviated as theCRC, CROC, or UNCRC) is a human rights treaty which sets out the civil, political, economic, social, health and cultural rights of children. The Convention defines a child as any human being under the age of eighteen, unless the age of majority is attained earlier under a state’s own domestic legislation.
Nations that ratify this convention are bound to it by international law. Compliance is monitored by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, which is composed of members from countries around the world. Once a year, the Committee submits a report to the Third Committee of the United Nations General Assembly, which also hears a statement from the CRC Chair, and the Assembly adopts a Resolution on the Rights of the Child.
Painting by Lakshmi Niranjana, Class Vlll, SKMJ High School
Governments of countries that have ratified the Convention are required to report to, and appear before, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child periodically to be examined on their progress with regards to the advancement of the implementation of the Convention and the status of child rights in their country. Their reports and the committee’s written views and concerns are available on the committee’s website.
The UN General Assembly adopted the Convention and opened it for signature on 20 November 1989 (the 30th anniversary of its Declaration of the Rights of the Child). It came into force on 2 September 1990, after it was ratified by the required number of nations. Currently, 194 countries are party to it, including every member of the United Nations except Somalia, South Sudan and the United States.
Source: Wikipedea (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Convention_on_the_Rights_of_the_Child)
AFRC INDIA, a rural educational research and training organisation has reached the threshold of a dream dating back to years. A media school, strongly rooted on the soil of the land is the brainchild of the founders Laila Saein and Anil Emage as well as a group of media professionals who work in Wayanad and elsewhere.
The media school is to be known as “GRAMA (Grasshopper Rural Applied Media Academy” which strives to be known as a media movement which sticks closer to nature and agriculture. The focus areas of the media school will be on rural reporting, farm journalism and environmental studies. Students of the media school will work along with farmers and environmentalists to get firsthand experience.
The media school will function closely with Peace Gong International Children`s newspaper and will create a learning space for the reporters of Peace Gong. Organaising media workshops, training child reporters and supporting bureaus of Peace Gong will be part of the media literacy initiatives of the school.
SKMJ High School says no to violence against children!
Gouri Krishna, Amrutha, Neethu Krishna , Gouri Nandakumar, Hari Krishnan, Hima, Enzia, Nehala, Chandana , Alwin
Class Vll, lX and X Students, SKMJ High School
More than sixty students assembled at the IT Hall in SKMJ High School, Kalpetta made a unanimous statement that children have rights and no one should be allowed to touch them against their wishes. The children belonged to the high school classes spent a whole day engaged in reality check, which include conducting a survey, referring newspaper reports on violence against children as well as dividing themselves into groups and shared their views. They also made paper presentations based on their observations.
The conference which was aptly title “Is childhood safe?” was organised by the Social Science Club of the school.
The teachers of the school Mr. Vijaya Raghavan, Mr. Haridasan, and Ms. Liji spoke on the importance of creating a violence free world for the children. An audio visual show based on acts of violence against children was conducted by the Head of IT department Mr. Anil Kumar.
Heated debates and discussions followed. From the conference what we could understand is that voice of children should be heard more vivid and louder. Especially in decision making places children should be given a role.
Voices from children:
- Recently an incident captured the attention in newspapers. The reports said that a student has been locked up in a kennel as punishment in an English medium school in the capital Trivandrum. Children suffer from many such torments in certain schools.
- Children suffer terribly during travelling to school in buses. They are humiliated and vctims of discrimination from the bus employees.
- Children from lower castes are neglected by the society and government. They are not getting good education.
- During wars and calamities children suffer most. They are the first ones to bear the blow of tragedies.
- It is sad to see that many thousands of children suffer from the cruel fate of child labour.
- In houses where adults are drunkards it is the children who are the victims of physical and mental torture.
- We have heard many stories of child molestations even from their own homes. Children are not safe in their homes.
- There are cases of many children physically assaulted by parents, step parents and relatives. Recently a small child, Shefeeq was cruelly tortured by his own mother and step father. Boiled water was poured on a child recently, a report said.
- Child marriage is another form of violence faced by children. Even before completing their Xth standard many girls are forced to marry.
- Shops near schools sell drugs and other intoxicants to students.
- Children from orphanages an d juvenile homes are exploited.
- Even small children are raped by family members or others.
After the group discussions the students found out the possible solutions for these issues:
- Vigilance squads should be formed in each Panchayats. Coordinators from social workers must be given charge to observe the safety of children in homes and society.
- Drugs and intoxicants including cigarettes should be strictly banned.
- International laws should protect the children during wars.
- TV is adversely affecting the mental set up of children. Programs featuring violence should be censured strictly.
- Just like police, another special force should be formed for the welfare of children.
- Ensure that children`s age for employability as 18 years.
- A strong law should be introduced against child marriage. Culprits should be punished severely.
- Special monitoring force should be appointed around schools to watch over drug sales.
- Special public transport buses should be arranged for children to travel safely and with dignity.
- Ensure education to all children. Educate grownups about the rights of children.