A promise to children
To a child, a promise means a lot.
Twenty five years ago, the world* made a promise to children: when it adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on 20 November 1989.
That we would do everything in our power to protect and promote their rights – to survive and thrive, to learn and grow, to make their voices heard and to help them reach their full potential.
§ We promised every child the right to survive and be healthy.
§ We promised all children the right to a name and an identity.
§ We promised every girl and boy the right to an education.
§ We promised that no child should be subjected to violence.
There is much to celebrate in Malaysia. More children are better off now than before – almost all are immunised; more survive to celebrate their fifth birthdays and beyond; more have access to clean water and sanitation, and more girls and boys are attending primary school.
Progress however has not reached every child. Somewhere in the country, there are children who officially do not exist because they have no birth certificate; children who go to sleep hungry; children who cannot go to school; children who endure beatings; some neglected, uncared for and unloved; some forced to work; some forced to marry while still children.
If we are to keep our promise to every child in Malaysia and across the world, we need new ways of doing things. Which is why, UNICEF has declared 2014 the Year of Innovation for Children.
We invite you - parents, teachers, doctors, nurses, religious and community leaders, policymakers, child rights advocates, businesses, the media – to use CRC@25 as an inspiration to find solutions to ensure no child is left behind.
Please let UNICEF know if you are planning a CRC@25 event. Send an email to: email@example.com.
* Malaysia signed the CRC on 28 December 1994 and ratified it on 17 February 1995. 2015 will mark 20 years of the CRC in Malaysia.