June 10, 2014

100 events around the world to mark Day of the African Child

Ewan Watt

Online Editor, Theirworld

Thousands of people around the world are getting ready to take part in events to mark Day of the African Child on June 16.

Youth campaigners and A World at School partners have organised more than 100 events in over 40 countries.

They include a Youth Takeover of the African Union in Addis Adaba, Ethiopia, involving young people from all countries on the continent.

Other events in this massive youth mobilisation include marches, rallies, plays and film screenings.

Day of the African Child is observed on June 16 each year in honour of the students massacred in Soweto in 1976 for protesting against education injustice in apartheid South Africa.

This year's Day of the African Child comes as the world continues to be horrified by the kidnapping of more than 250 girls from their school in Chibok, Nigeria.

Day of African Child events map

Events are being held worldwide to mark Day of the African Child

Attacks on education - and on students for simply wanting to go to school - are devastating communities across Africa.

This year's events will hammer home the message that safe, quality schools are needed for children everywhere.

The biggest event is the Youth Takeover of the African Union by 500 young people. There will also be a 4km run around the African Union headquarters by 1000 young people - to symbolise the fact we are running out of time to deliver the Millennium Development Goal of education for all by the end of 2015. 

Camila Urbina held an event in Colombia on June 6. She said: "The advocacy event was an opportunity to touch hearts and inspire young minds to speak up and let the force of youth be felt.

"To mobilise girls with education opportunities was to ignite the spark of change, one young heart at a time."

Camila said girls aged 12 to 18 from one of the best schools in the country took part in the event. The aim was to make them aware of the need for them to speak up for all children in Colombia and around the world who do not go to school.

She added: "The girls were really excited and participated actively in a social media campaigning, made signs and pledged to expand the message of the importance of education with their friends and families."

School in Democratic Republic of Congo

Safe, quality schools are needed for all children in Africa. Picture: Pax Christi Uvira asbl

Other youth events taking place on Day of the African Child and the rest of June include:

Brazil - a Youth Takeover of City Hall in Rio de Janeiro

Nepal - a children's play about education

Nigeria - a rally held by the teachers union with one of A World at School's Global Youth Ambassadors

Ghana - a public march for global edcuation led by a Gobal Youth Ambassador

Sudan - a series of youth events and meetings on education including a Global Youth Ambassador leading a public screening of the A World at School video Girls With Books

Bangladesh - a rally with 500 indigenous, marginalised and non-indigenous youths

Macedonia - a meeting on safety in schools involving school student councils, school management, local authorities, police and social work

Pakistan - a Day of the African Child conference 

Check out the events around the world, get all the action tools you need to plan your own event or learn more about Day of the African Child and Youth Action Month.

Don't miss news, views and pictures from Day of the African Child and Youth Action Month.

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