20 Years - The Convention on the Rights of the Child

Families and communities

What can families and communities do to advance the principles set forth by the Convention on the Rights of the Child?

  • Read the CRC. Know and understand its principles and how it can be applied to protect children and childhoods.
  • Hold your government accountable. Find out how your local, national and international leaders are protecting child rights in your community. Make sure that responses to the specific needs of children are an essential part of all programmes and budgets.
  • Help spread the word about children’s rights. Organize a child rights awareness campaign in your school, college, workplace, community or place of worship. You may be surprised how little people know about children’s rights; inform them in an interactive way.
  • Raise funds. Organize activities to raise funds for children’s rights while creating awareness amongst your donors.
  • Help spread the word online. Do you send e-mail, post on message boards or social networking sites, or have your own blog or website? If so, help spread the word online.
  • Create safe spaces where people living with HIV/AIDS can meet, share concerns and information, and take joint action.
  • Help young people develop the skills and self-confidence to remain safe in difficult situations.
  • Educate others about HIV and AIDS. Alert people in your school, community and workplace to the fact that HIV is not a disease that affects only adults and that millions of children are adversely affected by the AIDS pandemic.
  • Talk to business owners. Learn more about what labour unions and businesses are doing to protect child rights in the workplace. Find out if they will give you support and work together on a campaign.
  • Ensure that all children are registered at birth. Registration ensures their right to a name and nationality as well as their access to education, health care, and legal and social services.
  • Ensure that all children in the community attend a child-friendly school full-time and receive an education that is of good quality, equal for all children and free from violence. This can involve changing classroom management (traditionally based on fear, threats, humiliation and physical punishment) to a child-friendly approach that is non-discriminatory and supports cooperative learning.
  • Establish safe complaint mechanisms for all forms of violence against children, including sexual violence and abuse, bullying and corporal punishment.
  • Support initiatives to prevent and respond to all forms of violence in settings where children live, go to school, play and work – including codes of conduct and standards, public campaigns, and proper reporting procedures and help-lines.
  • Support the expansion of services that are community-based and services for children.
  • Respect children. Use positive and non-violent discipline, including respecting the child’s perspective.
  • Communicate with children. Children and adults should actively and consistently talk to each other, sharing information and ideas in the home, school and community with mutual respect. Listen to, and take seriously, the views of both boys and girls. Ensure that vulnerable children are able to express their opinions and make decisions

Visit these websites to learn more about what families and communities can do to advance the principles set forth by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (all links open in a new window).
THE CRC IN YOUR LANGUAGE
See the CRC in 58 languages including many child-friendly versions.

I HAVE A RIGHT TO
BBC World Service site outlining the rights of children and young people.

ARTICLE 12
A network of young people that promotes the CRC.

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH
News, analysis and resources from human rights perspective.

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