Every November 20th, the world celebrates Children’s Rights Day, marking the anniversary of the adoption of the International Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). By adopting this Convention in 1989, the international community recognizes children as holder of social, economic, civil, cultural and political rights, as adults.
The Convention establishes the fundamental, mandatory and non-negotiable rights of all children throughout the world in 54 articles. All the rights established in the Convention are of equal importance and are related to four main principles:
– non-discrimination: regardless of race, colour, sex, language, ethnic or social background, children enjoy the same rights;
– the child’s best interests: any decision must be taken in favour of the best interests of the child;
– survival and development: every child has the right to live, to survive and to develop in the best possible conditions;
– participation: every child has the right to participate and play an active role in society.
On the 27thof September 1990, less than a year after its adoption, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) ratified the CRC, thus committing to ensuring a dignified future amidst peace and dignity, tolerance, freedom, equality and solidarity for children living in the country. By reaffirming its membership and commitment to CRC in the Preamble of its Constitution, the DRC places the welfare of the child at the centre of its fundamental law.
Like every year, UNICEF used November 20th to remind civil society, politicians and opinion leaders of the need to place children at the heart of their concerns. The children of the DRC had the opportunity to celebrate this anniversary across the country and voice their opinion on the theme chosen as a priority this year: access to quality education for all.
Translated from French by Ariane Apodaca
Serge Wingi est Chargé de Communication et point focal Participation de l’Enfant à l’UNICEF RDC. Spécialisé en Sciences de la Communication et Marketing Social, sa ferme conviction est que les enfants peuvent changer le monde, si l’on investi en eux. Sa passion: participer activement à la mobilisation de la communauté et des décideurs pour un plus grand investissement au niveau de l’enfance. “Il n’y a pas de succès sans successeur”, dit-on.
Serge Wingi is communications officer and focal point for Child Participation within UNICEF in the DRC. A specialist in Communication Sciences and social marketing, Serge firmly believes that children can change the world, if only we invest in them. His passion is to actively participate in mobilising the community and policymakers to invest more in children. It is said: ‘There is no success without a successor.’