Meeting with Children
19 November 2009
On 19 November 2009 a meeting was held of children from socially vulnerable groups with Timothy Schaffter, head of UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund.
The meeting was organised by the NGO Network for Child Rights and UNICEF in Kyrgyzstan. The Deputy Minister of Labour, Employment and Migration also participated.
The meeting took place on the International Day for the Prevention of Violence against Children (19 November), and just before International Children’s Day (20 November) in the framework of the Network’s Childhood without Violence and Cruelty public campaign.
The aim of the campaign is to promote implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in the Kyrgyz Republic. The main participants in the campaign are children.
In the framework of the campaign, on 18 October the Dreams of Mountain Children of Central Asia photo exhibition was officially opened in Bishkek. Tim Schaffter, the head of UNICEF took part in the Test for Adults talk show on national television, where he answered the questions of 80 children and adolescents taking part in the programme. In addition, children from risk groups, with the support of UNICEF, created a one minute film about the problems faced by children in the country, and also took part in the Free Microphone talk show on national television, with leaders of NGOs, and staff members of UNICEF and other international organisations. And finally, on 20 November, the day when the whole world marked the 20th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, a presentation took place in UN House of research about child poverty and deprivation in Kyrgyzstan.
Background information: The Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted through resolution 44/25 of the United Nations General Assembly of 20 November 1989 and came into force in the Kyrgyz Republic on 6 November 1994. It is for this reason that 20 November has been designated World Children’s Day.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is an international legal agreement that defines the rights of children to education, access to cultural achievements, rest and leisure, and the provision of other services to children by UN member states. The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the first and basic international legal agreement in which the rights of children are considered at the level of international law. The document consists of 54 articles, detailing the individual rights of young citizens up to 18 years of age to full development of their potential in conditions of freedom from hunger and need, cruelty, exploitation and other forms of abuse.
The central idea of the Convention is the requirement to provide for “the best interests of the child.” All of its provisions are encapsulated in four demands: to ensure the rights of children to survival, development, protection and active participation in public life.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child asserts a range of legal principles, which include recognition of the child as a separate, full-fledged, legally recognised individual who possesses all rights and freedoms; and the priority of the interests of the child before the demands of the state, society, family and religion.
UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) – Olga Grebennikova 61-12-11 (ext. 139) 0 555 71-26-99
NGO Network for Child Rights – Elena Voronina 56-50-85, (0550)82-82-79