Afrique du Sud

"1000 Wishes for the Children of the World": Celebrating children’s voices through art

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© UNICEF South Africa/2004/Giacomo Pirozzi
On 29 May 2004, thousands of South African children participated in a UNICEF global initiative, dubbed “1000 Wishes for the Children of the World.” Children within the network of Soul Buddyz Clubs painted their wishes on panels representing the hopes and
JOHANNESBURG, 14 June 2004—“1000 Wishes for the Children of the World,” which highlights the views and wishes of children across the world through a giant painting, arrived in Johannesburg, South Africa on 29 May. Thousands of South African children participated in this global UNICEF initiative.

Primary school pupils from the network of Soul Buddyz Clubs partnered with older art students from the German school in Johannesburg. They painted their wishes on panels representing the hopes and dreams of South African children.

The South African element of the “1000 Wishes for the Children of the World” is the international launch of the initiative. It is also a contribution to South Africa’s celebrations of the 10 years of democracy, as well as the national Youth Day and the UN Day of the African Child, observed globally on 16 June.

Image de l'UNICEF
© UNICEF South Africa/2004/Giacomo Pirozzi
One of the exciting children who participated in the painting ceremony on 29 May, in Johannesburg.
German schoolchildren initiated “1000 Wishes for the Children of the World” to mark the 50th anniversary of the German National Committee for UNICEF. More than 5,000 German children painted their wishes for the needy children of the world on pieces of cloth, which were then joined together forming a very large painting.

The “1000 Wishes” work of art then travelled to New York and Brazil, where the children of these countries added their own wishes to the piece, which has now grown to become an incredible 600 square meters in size.

Misrak Elias, UNICEF Country Representative in South Africa explains: “We appreciate all our partners, including the assistance provided by the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany and art students from the German School in Johannesburg, who are mentoring the younger children painting the wishes of South African children on 10 panels that will be added to the original painting and displayed on the Hill for all to see.”

“Remarkably, the paintings have shown that the wishes of German, American, Brazilian and South African children are very much the same – improved housing and recreation facilities, access to education, water, food and good health." said Elias.

Image de l'UNICEF
© UNICEF South Africa/2004/Giacomo Pirozzi
Misrak Elias (second from left), UNICEF Country Representative in South Africa, is delighted in seeing the opinions of children receiving global attention.

After South Africa, “1000 Wishes” will proceed through Japan and then onwards to Athens for the start of the 2004 Summer Olympic Games. UNICEF is delighted to have the President of the Japanese Olympic Committee, Mr. Tsunekazu Takeda, symbolically escort the “1000 Wishes” from Tokyo to this year’s Games.

During the Games’ finale in Athens, “1000 Wishes” will be spotlighted to raise awareness of the voice and contributions of the children of the world. In cooperation with ATHOC (Athens 2004 Olympic Organizing Committee) and the Greek National Committee for UNICEF, “1000 Wishes” will then launch a painting day for the children of Greece, where their wishes will be added.


 

 

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14 June 2004: Painting ceremony for “1000 Wishes for the Children of the World”.

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