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UNICEF Child Reporters Celebrate 30th Anniversary of the UNCRC in Jharkhand

Ranchi, Jharkhand | November | 29, 2019 :: UNICEF child reporters were joined by the Governor, Smt. Draupadi Murmu, as they commemorated the 30th anniversary of the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) at the Raj Bhawan in Ranchi today. Child reporters from different government schools of Ranchi district shared their experiences and showcased their work in the presence of the Governor and senior government officials.

Home to one-fifth of the world’s children, India ratified the CRC in 1992, embracing standards in health care, education and legal, civil and social services. The UNCRC is the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history, and in the 30 years since its adoption, it has helped to transform children’s lives.

Affirming the Government of Jharkhand’s commitment to child rights, the Hon’ble Governor of Jharkhand, Smt. Droupadi Murmu said that the combined efforts from all sections of society would ensure a better future for the children of a mineral-rich, densely forested state with a 38 per cent tribal population, a sizeable portion of which inhabits remote areas.

“We have gathered today to remind ourselves about the importance of child rights and to build on the foundations laid by the UN 30 years ago. We have to work together, because the government’s efforts alone will not help us ensure these rights. I have faith that with your support we can build a society more sensitive to children’s needs, as described in the UNCRC,” she said.
Speaking at the event, Prasanta Dash, Chief of Field Office, UNICEF Jharkhand, lauded the child reporters for being vocal advocates of child rights, and outlined UNICEF’s Generation Unlimited or YuWaah initiative which aims to ensure every young person is in some form of school, learning, training or employment suitable for their age, so they can reach their goals and be productive citizens.

“UNICEF is working with the Government of India, other UN agencies, civil society organizations, private sector and young people to come up with solutions as well as provide opportunities and platforms to adolescent and young people. We want adolescents and young people to have the tools and be equipped as they move from school to work and childhood to adulthood and achieve their goals,” Dash said.

Kusma Devi, a child reporter and 8th grade student at the Government School in Pirra, spelt out the obstacles challenging the pursuit of her dreams.

“I want to become an Army officer but I am facing many challenges. There is no facility of English and computer education in my school, which are essential for better job opportunities. The society where I come also opposes higher education for girls and many girls are forced to marry just after they pass the 8th grade. I wish that every girl receives a quality education and equal opportunities to fulfil her aspirations. No girls should be forced into child marriage as it deprives them of their childhood and rights,” she said.

The Governor awarded the winners of UNICEF’s Volunteers4ChildRights initiative and launched the For Every Child, Every Right coffee table book chronicling the child reporters’ success stories, artwork, photography, video interviews and poetry in the course of their work as child rights advocates.

The event concluded with a question-answer session where the children raised their concerns with the governor and were assured of her support in their future endeavours.

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