The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child was adopted in 1990 by the Organisation of African Unity (now the African Union). It is a legally binding document that sets the rights and responsibilities of children. This Charter recognizes all of the rights guaranteed in the Convention on the Rights of the Child and also takes into consideration the specific rights of African children based on their unique contexts and cultures.
In most African countries and contexts, the voice of children has not been heard. Certain cultures and norms, political, social and religious contexts bring further complexities in instituting child led interventions that offer a platform for the amplification of their voices. Much success in implementing the Agenda has been possible through ratification of global and regional human rights treaties by national governments. There is a need to document and share efforts on how governments, development partners, CSOs and individuals within the continent have managed to have children’s voices at the center stage of the implementation of the AU Charter.
This webinar will reflect on the implementation of child rights for the past 30 years, providing a platform for various practitioners to share learnings, best practice and innovations. The conversations will lay a foundation to explore opportunities for acceleration of efforts through advocacy that can be applied to ensure the consideration and prioritization of child rights in development agendas in Africa from the regional, national and at the grassroots level by all actors. Some of the questions that will be explored include:
How have regional bodies, governments, development partners and civil society organizations supported children to express their views since the adoption of the charter?
What are the best practices and lessons learnt while advocating for child rights interventions?
Given the progress today, how best can regional bodies, governments, development partners, civil society organizations and individuals accelerate the implementation of the Agenda 2040 to ensure the fulfilment of the 10 aspirations.
Dr Edward Addai is the UNICEF Representative to the AU and ECA. Originally a public health physician, specialized in policy analysis, planning, monitoring and evaluation, he is a systems thinker and an expert in results-based management and programme design. He started his career as a clinician and district medical office in Ahafo Ano South, a small district in Ghana and worked his way to become the Director of Policy Planning Monitoring and Evaluation in Ghana. He is currently the UNCEF Representative to the African Union and UNECA. Prior to taking on this role he was the Regional Chief of Programme Planning Monitoring and Evaluation, UNICEF ESARO and before this was the Director of Monitoring and Evaluation in the Global Fund.
Vianney Dong is a Congolese development and advocate professional with an extensive experience spanning for more than 15 years in engaging with social development, duty bearers from national level, regional up to the global level. She has undertaken multiple initiatives to raise the profile and standing of other civil society actors in her country, including the religious leaders, and multiple women’s groups.
Further she has managed the implementation of a ground breaking program called Citizen Voice and Action, that is helping ordinary Congolese across the country to engage their local Government in a process to restore accountability to public funding, and restores trust to Government and civil-society relationships Ms Vianney currently heads Regional Advocacy and External Engagement for World Vision Southern Africa with a focus on engaging regional human rights duty bearers such as SADC and the AU- African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of Children and strengthen the linkages by leveraging the community works to the regional bodies.
Hon Daniel Molokele is the member of Parliament of Zimbabwe for Hwange Central constituency. He is also a well known human rights lawyer and civil society leader focusing especially on public health advocacy.
Ruth Koshal is a strategic and visionary leader with over 20 years of experience in policy, advocacy, child rights and programme management. She endeavours to empower children and youth to fulfil their potential through advocating for change in knowledge, attitude, systems and policies. Mrs. Koshal has worked with the leading child focused organisations, World Vision International and Save the Children International. Her experience in policy, advocacy, child rights and programme management has been in in Tanzania, the United States and Kenya at the national, international and regional levels, respectively. Since February 2019 she has been contracted by UNICEF Kenya for different consultancy assignments. She developed the National Prevention and Response Plan on Violence Against Children 2019-2023 and Child Friendly Booklet for the Department of Children Services in the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection. Ruth contributed to the development of the Kenya Violence Against Children Survey Report 2019. She is also preparing the Communications Strategy and Resource Mobilisation Strategy for the National Prevention and Response Plan.