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National Summit on Children sets agenda together with children for future actions for children

"Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, 27 May 2004 – “Listen to children and encourage their participation” was the key issue tabled at the National Summit on Children which began today, May 27 at the Government House in Ulaanbaatar.
More than 600 representatives from children’s organizations, governmental and non-governmental organizations, UN agencies and others attended the summit.
Preceding the National summit Children’s Forum attended by more than 100 child delegates representing all 21 aimags in Mongolia reviewed the progress of implementation of National Programme of Action for development and protection of children and agreed recommendations for the next stage of the programme.
The Prime Minister of Mongolia and Chair of the National Council for Children, Mr. Nambar Enkhbayar, opening the Summit stressed the importance to respect the rights of children to express themselves in solving problems that affect their lives. He expressed his keen interest in hearing the voices of children and called for mutual fruitful cooperation among various sectors of society to make Mongolia – a country fit for all children.
In his greetings sent to the participants of the summit, the President of Mongolia Mr. N. Bagabandi, also highlighted the significance of today’s summit in planning future actions for children and said “Historically, Mongolians always loved and cared for their children. Following this tradition, let every Mongolian child be under the patronage of the Government”.
Mr. Kul Gautam praised the commitment of the Government of Mongolia for its continued leadership in making a world more fit for children, starting right here in Mongolia. As poverty is one of the major obstacles to meeting the basic needs and fulfilling the legitimate rights of Mongolia’s children, he said that “We at UNICEF believe that poverty reduction must begin with children. Poverty cannot be eradicated unless the basic capabilities of children are developed and safeguarded from the moment of birth.” Stressing the importance that ”all of Mongolia’s children grow to their full human potential – well nourished, healthy, well educated, productive, innovative and creative”, Mr. Gautam assured that UNICEF and the United Nations stand ready to cooperate with all partners to help build Mongolia fit for all its children.
On behalf of all the children of Mongolia E. Gankhuyag, a boy who participated in the Pacific Ministerial Consultation held last year in Bali, indonesia, thanked all the organizers of the summit for giving a chance to children to express their views, opinions and aspirations. He assured the delegates that children will work hard to make their own contribution in implementing the programs designed for children.
In the afternoon session children representatives presented the findings, conclusions and recommendations from their forum held yesterday and asked many interesting questions from vice ministers, state secretaries of ministries and other government officials. As one of vice ministers, who is running for this coming Parliamentary election, noted “the questions children are asking here are even more difficult than those asked by voters whom I met during my election campaign”.
Tomorrow on Friday, 28 May the summit participants will present the recommendations and conclusions, developed at the discussion sessions today.
For more information and interviews, please contact
Chanrav Burenbayar, Communications Officer, UNICEF Mongolia



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