UNICEF – Universal Children’s Day November 20
8 November, 2010
Universal Children’s Day takes place each year to promote the welfare of the world’s children. ‘The neglected agenda: protecting children without adequate parental care’ is a 2009 report from participants at Wilton Park.
Universal Children’s Day takes place on November 20 annually. Initially proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1954, it encourages countries to promote mutual exchange and understanding among children and to initiate action to benefit and promote the welfare of the world’s children.
November 20 is also the anniversary of the day when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1959. The Convention on the Rights of the Child was then signed on the same day in 1989.
The conference at Wilton Park realised many of the changes needed to better care for and protect vulnerable children. Save the Children co-sponsored the gathering of experts in December 2009, in partnership with UNICEF, and the Better Care Network. The International policy on orphans and children without adequate parental care conference brought together people who champion national contexts, and work together to share all the ideas and moral support required to take child welfare issues forward.
The subsequent report summarises the challenges – including gathering data, harnessing political will, strengthening systems, securing funding, and increasing public and political understanding regarding children without adequate parental care.
At the heart of every solution is the goal of supporting families and communities to care for their children. Responses need to be based on the rights, wishes and best interests of children; they should address the root causes of vulnerability; and with established systems of social service, social protection and care.