June 15, 2016

Day of the African Child 2016: our Global Youth Ambassadors stand up for children’s rights

Ewan Watt

Online Editor, Theirworld

GYA  from Nigeria John Gbenagno at youth forum for Day of the African Child 2016

Global Youth Ambassador John Gbenagnon at a youth forum he held in Benin for Day of the African Child

 

Almost 500 million children around the world live in countries affected by crises such as conflicts, natural disasters and disease outbreaks.

Millions of those children are in Africa and are missing out on their education, receiving poor quality schooling or at risk of dropping out of school altogether.

That's why this year's theme for the annual Day of the African Child is “Conflict and Crisis in Africa: Protecting all Children’s Rights”. A report for the African Union said the continent "remains the most conflict-prone region in the world".

June 16 is the day when young campaigners stand up for children's rights in Africa - including our network of Global Youth Ambassadors (GYAs).

This blog will feature news, pictures and social media postings from some of the Day of the African Child events. You can also find out about the tragedy in Soweto, South Africa, that led to this day being marked each year.

FOUR GYAs, FOUR GREAT IDEAS

Four of our GYAS successfully submitted a proposal and were awarded a small grant from A World at School to mark Day of the African Child 2016.

Ichide Charles from Nigeria is to raise awareness of IDP (internally displaced people) education through an event with children, young people, local government officials and NGOs, which will include a drama and poetry competition.

Ijeoma Idika-Chima, also from Nigeria, is producing a documentary to show the challenges, needs and possible solutions to support education among vulnerable children affected by the Boko Haram crisis. Follow Ijeoma on Twitter.

John Gbenagnon from Benin is exploring how children can achieve their full potential at school through the arts, using a Twitter chat, a radio show and an event of performances, panels and discussions. Follow John on Twitter.

Moses Browne from Liberia is advocating for the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal 4 - inclusive and quality education for all - through public events, a parade and a petition that will go to the Liberian government. The rest of the GYAs in Liberia have been supporting him in his planning and organisation. Follow Moses on Twitter.

MOSES IN LIBERIA

Moses Browne met with Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the President of Liberia, at his parade in the capital Monrovia.

Liberia President Moses at parade with GYA Moses Browne

And here are some of the people taking part in the parade.

Liberia parade organised by GYA Moses Browne for Day of the African Child

Moses has written a blog about how students presented a petition statement to members of the Liberian legislature. He also met President Sirleaf, who said: "Let’s meet to discuss further on the best approaches and actions this administration can take to address the education challenge so that all children can be enrolled and have access to quality education." Read his blog here.

GYA from Liberia Moses Brown at parade for Day of the African Child

Moses also wrote a blog for Huffington Post about education in Liberia and young people's calls for change. Read it here.

JOHN IN BENIN

John Gbenagnon was delighted with the way the day went. He said: "Everything was excellent today. The forum was a great success and we were at Radio Benin Culture - the programme was excellent."

Here are some pictures from the youth forum in the capital city of Porto-Novo.

GYA from Benin John Gbenagnon holds youth forum on Day of African Child 2016

GYA from Benin John Gbenagnon holds youth forum on Day of African Child 2016

GYA from Benin John Gbenagnon holds youth forum on Day of African Child 2016 1

And here's what the Souhoutou Initiative - an NGO which works on gender, leadership, development, translation, coaching and communication -  thought about the youth forum.

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IJEOMA IN NIGERIA

These pictures show Ijeoma Idika-Chima doing interviews for her documentary film about education among vulnerable children in northeastern Nigeria. She said: "Teenz Global Foundation is producing a documentary that focuses on the challenges, needs and possible solutions to support education among vulnerable children affected by the Boko Haram crisis.

GYA from Nigeria Ijeoma Idika-Chima makes a film about education in Nigeria for Day of the African Child 2016

"The filming went very well. Most of the children were camera-shy, so we have had to restructure our questions a bit such that they were not upset but could share their story."

GYA from Nigeria Ijeoma Idika-Chima makes a film about education in Nigeria for Day of the African Child 2016

She said Teenz Global Foundation's aim "is to work with the IDP (internally displaced people) camp authorities to establish a school or raise scholarships for the children to attend LEA while we still provide psycho-social support and Open Learning Kits for them."

GYA from Nigeria Ijeoma Idika-Chima makes a film about education in Nigeria for Day of the African Child 2016

ICHIDE IN NIGERIA

Ichide Charles held an event at Ureu-Offong/Oroko in Akwa Ibom state, featuring children, young people, community youth leaders, local government officials and NGOs. They included 70 youth from the Sustainable Development Goals Club of the National Youth Service Corps.

GYA from Nigeria Ichide Charles holds event to mark Day of the African Child 2016

It included a drama and poetry competition to engage 40 children from six schools on the ideas of the Day of the African Child.

GYA from Nigeria Ichide Charles holds event to mark Day of the African Child 2016

There were interactive sessions and motivational talks on education change, IDP (internally displaced people) education and the Safe Schools Initiative.

GYA from Nigeria Ichide Charles holds event to mark Day of the African Child 2016

A World At School's Global Youth Ambassadors in Africa are kindly supported by the players of the People's Postcode Lottery.

Relive our Day of the African Child 2015 blog

Relive our Day of the African Child 2014 blog

 

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