Early Learning for Children in Crisis and Conflict

ECD and Early Learning for Children in Crisis and Conflict
Moving Minds Alliance

There is an urgent need for a comprehensive response to the rapidly growing population of young children (age 0-6) worldwide living in crisis and conflict.

Substantial evidence from neuroscience to economics indicates that the early years of a child’s life lay the foundation for long-term health, learning and behavior. The first months and years are not only a critical period in an individual child’s lifelong capacity for learning, but weak learning foundations for children can also compromise the long-term development of nations.

To explore the report, click here.

Child Protection Documents

From the latest INEE newsletter:

[DOCUMENTS] Child Protection Documents

CPC Learning Network
What is next for the child rights and child protection movements?  In this edition of the CPC newsletter, we are proud to launch a series of reports.  Taken together, these documents take stock of the global landscapes of child rights and child protection and prompt us to challenge our traditional ways of operating.

If these documents inspire and challenge you, and we hope that they will, please reach out to let us know how you might be keen to get engaged.

Among the many resources we are sharing below, we are especially excited to highlight the Alliance for Child Protection in Humanitarian Protection’s advocacy brief, which calls for urgent action to rapidly reunify separated children with their families and to end detention at US borders.

Learn more here.

Children’s rights at the United Nations

Children’s rights at the United Nations

From CRIN

Annual day on the rights of the child

The theme of this year’s annual day on the rights of the child is “Information and communication technology and child sexual exploitation”. The full-day meeting will constitute an important opportunity to discuss different national, regional and international initiatives to empower children through information and communications technologies (ICTs). The meeting will discuss the need for children to be protected against child sexual exploitation online and offline, while ensuring their digital rights are upheld. The annual day will explore:

  • The relationship between ICTs and the rights of the child, including opportunities and challenges to the realisation of these rights;

  • Good practices and lessons learnt aimed at promoting regional and international cooperation on this issue;

  • Strategies to empower children to make better use of the internet, and to contribute to their online protection;

  • Recommendations to guarantee safe and equal access for children to ICTs and to ensure the criminalisation of online child abuse and exploitation.

You can watch the event live and archived on http://webtv.un.org.

Child rights events at the Human Rights Council:

Monday – 07/03/2016

Tuesday – 08/03/2016

Thursday – 10/03/2016

 

Special rapporteur reports at the Human Rights Council

Special procedure mandate-holders are requested by the Human Rights Council to present annual reports in which they describe their activities undertaken during the previous year. The annual reports discuss general issues concerning: working methods, theoretical analysis, general trends and developments with regard to their respective mandates and may contain general recommendations. Reports on country visits are usually presented as addenda to the annual reports.

The following reports will be presented at this year’s Human Rights Council:

  • A/HRC/31/19 – Annual report of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict.

  • A/HRC/31/20 – Annual report of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children.

  • A/HRC/31/29 – Report of the Secretary-General on the impact of the arbitrary deprivation of nationality on the enjoyment of the rights of children concerned, as well as on the existing laws and practices on accessibility for children to acquire nationality, inter alia, of the country in which they are born, if they otherwise would be stateless.

  • A/HRC/31/33 – Follow-up report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on investment in the rights of the child.

  • A/HRC/31/34 – Report of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on information and communications technology and child sexual exploitation.

  • A/HRC/31/35 – Study of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the situation of migrants in transit, including unaccompanied children and adolescents, as well as women and girls.

  • A/HRC/31/37 – Annual report on Protection of the family: contribution of the family to the realization of the right to an adequate standard of living for its members, particularly through its role in poverty eradication and achieving sustainable development. Report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

  • A/HRC/31/58/Add.2 – Report of the Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography on her mission to Armenia.

  • A/HRC/31/80 – Report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on technical cooperation and capacity-building to promote and protect the rights of all migrants, including women, children, older persons and persons with disabilities.

An important report:

Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children

In light of this year’s annual day on the rights of the child, and speaking on the occasion of Safer Internet Day last month, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children, Marta Santos Pais, renewed her call to ensure that the empowerment of children is at the heart of building a safer and more inclusive Internet. She noted that rather than curtailing children’s natural curiosity and sense of innovation, it is critical to tap into their resourcefulness and enhance their capacities to use the internet with confidence and safety.

This year also marks the 10th anniversary of the United Nations Study on Violence against Children and the start of efforts to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including goal 16.2 on ending all forms of violence against children. The annual report of the Special Representative reviews key developments and initiatives she has promoted. This year’s annual report addresses the SDGs, the Global study on the deprivation of liberty, regional processes for the protection of children from violence and a special note of concern drawing attention to the serious impact on children of cyberbullying and challenges to their digital rights.

Disadvantage at the Starting Gate: Early Childhood Education in Pakistan

Source: Disadvantage at the Starting Gate: Early Childhood Education in Pakistan

By Huma Zia Faran, Annual Status of Education Report (ASER), Pakistan.

ASER1The recent upsurge in research on the development of a child’s brain underscores the need for greater attention to early childhood care and education, especially in developing countries. Studies (Cunha et al., 2006, and Heckman et al., 2010) reveal how a child’s brain develops at a surprisingly rapid rate during the early years thereby laying foundations for lifelong development. Early childhood education helps level the playing field for disadvantaged children as they enter primary school, empowering them to be confident and successful in later education and employment.

The recently agreed Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) on education, that Pakistan has committed to, makes reference to the importance of early childhood education:

Goal 4.2: By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys have access to quality early childhood development, care and pre-primary education so that they are ready for primary education

Being part of such global education commitments and following Article 25-A of Pakistan’s Constitution on the Right to Education, Pakistan included at least one compulsory year of early childhood education in its National Education Policy and developed a National Curriculum for Early Childhood Education (ECE). However, the ECE goals were farfetched. By the end of 2015, ASER Pakistan found that the proportion of children between 3-5 years who were out of school was 61% in rural areas and 42% in urban areas. In rural areas, 51% of early childhood provision is public, compared to 58% in urban areas.

Evidence from ASER shows that Pakistan faces a two-fold challenge – access to early childhood schooling and the long lasting effect it has on the learning abilities of a child.

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In Tanzania, the situation may be seen as similar in that many rural children do not have access to pre-primary education, may not be taught in their mother tongue when they reach primary school and this fact alone starts to explain the low achievement at grade 3 – so the effects are immediate and long lasting. More on this on other blog posts such as here.

Hear It From the Children

Any opportunity to hear children speak about their situation and how it could be improved, is worth listening to…..

Hear It From the Children
Save the Children INTERSOS, World Vision International and CARE

Report
‘Hear It From The Children’ provides a fascinating insight into what children from communities that have been most affected by the South Sudan conflict consider to be their top priorities. A clear message has emerged from the children, and it is that, “…we want to learn – even during war.” It is a simple but powerful message that challenges us all to re-think how we can best respond to children’s needs in times of conflict.

Click here to download the report.
and another opportunity to be aware of young people’s concerns and ‘solutions’…
PODCAST #100 – Brightest Hope
UNICEF

Podcast – International Peace Day: Education provides hope for young people in time of crisis

While conflicts rage, and global crises seem to multiply, one thing remains unchanged – children continue to seek an education.

To highlight the bravery of these inspiring young people, the Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE) and UN Global Education First Initiative held an essay competition on education in crisis, receiving more than 700 submissions from around the world. Twelve of these essays were recently published in a booklet entitled: The Brightest Hope.

In the lead up to the International Day of Peace (21 September), UNICEF podcast moderator Mia Lobel spoke with two students and young essayists: Ivy Kimtai, 21, from the Mount Elgon region of Kenya and Jephthah Temona, 19, from Abuja, the capital of Nigeria.

Click here to listen to the podcast.

KidsRights Index – International launch

It has been over twenty years since the initiation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, with most countries now being signatories, however the scale of abuses against children is still great, some conscious and some unconscious abuses due to lack of knowledge on children’s rights. This new KidsRights Index may at least ‘name and shame’ some countries into taking the CRC and its implementation more seriously.

International Launch of the KidsRights Index
KidsRights FoundationOn 19th November 2013 the KidsRights Index was launched at the Peace Palace, The Hague, the Netherlands. The KidsRights Index is an initiative by the KidsRights Foundation and the Erasmus University Rotterdam (Erasmus School of Economics and International Institute of Social Studies).

The KidsRights Index is the first global ranking on how countries are adhering to children’s rights. The KidsRights Index is concrete, compact, constructive and adaptable. The country-ranking will be published yearly and will be made available to the public through a comprehensive website. New dimensions may be added over time to enrich the index. Country-specific recommendations can be made on the basis of the KidsRights Index.

The KidsRights Index draws on two key available sources of information: firstly, the Concluding Observations adopted by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child and secondly, UNICEF’s annual State of the World’s Children reports. The Concluding Observations complement the available quantitative data by adding information on the key general requirements of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). These requirements are crucial for establishing an adequate formal enabling environment for children’s rights in a country. They extend to the general CRC principles that are prescribed for all implementation efforts (non-discrimination, best interests of the child, respect for the views of the child) and to the structural provision of legislation, budget, data and state-civil society cooperation.

To view the KidsRights Index, please click here.

 

Universal Children’s Day – 2013

November 20 is Universal Children’s Day. It’s also the 24th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

crights

As the most vulnerable age group, children have special global rights and protections, such as the right to live with their parents and protections against harmful or exploitative work. These and many others are recognized by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), the most accepted human rights treaty in history.

“We were all children once. And we all share the desire for the well-being of our children, which has always been and will continue to be the most universally cherished aspiration of humankind.”

We the Children: End-decade review of the follow-up to the World Summit for Children -Report of the Secretary-General (2001)

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By resolution 836(IX) of 14 December 1954, the General Assembly recommended that all countries institute a Universal Children’s Day, to be observed as a day of worldwide fraternity and understanding between children. It recommended that the Day was to be observed also as a day of activity devoted to promoting the ideals and objectives of the Charter and the welfare of the children of the world. The Assembly suggested to governments that the Day be observed on the date and in the way which each considers appropriate. The date 20 November, marks the day on which the Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, in 1959, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, in 1989.

 

 

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In 2000 world leaders outlined the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – which range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015. Though the Goals are for all humankind, they are primarily about children. UNICEF notes that six of the eight goals relate directly to children and meeting the last two will also make critical improvements in their lives.

In 2012, the Secretary-General launched a new initiative Education First. The Initiative aims to raise the political profile of education, strengthen the global movement to achieve quality education and generate additional and sufficient funding through sustained advocacy efforts. Achieving gains in education will have an impact on all the Millennium Development Goals, from lower child and maternal mortality, to better health, higher income and more environmentally-friendly societies.

Some other resources for Universal Children’s Day:

UN Global Issues – Children

CyberSchoolBus

MDG Goal 2: Achieve Universal Primary Education

MDG Goal 4: Reduce Child Mortality

20 years of the Convention on the Rights of the Child

The State of the World’s Children 2009: Maternal and Newborn Health

Voices of Youth

UNICEF and Say Yes for children

UN Study on Violence against Children (UNICEF | OHCHR)

UN Special Session on Children

GA on Children

World Summit for Children

The UN Works for Children

Securing the future – advocating for children (UNAIDS)

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and more on education….

November 18-22 is International Education Week, an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. The Global Education Conference is a collaborative, inclusive, world-wide community initiative involving students, educators, and organizations at all levels. It is designed to significantly increase opportunities for building education-related connections around the globe while supporting cultural awareness and recognition of diversity.

Click here for more information.