This past week, during Childrenís Book Week, we have been hearing about the energizing power of books. But for there to even be books in our childrenís hands -- books to summon wonder, kindle curiousity, feed a hungry imagination, or soothe a terrible, horrible, no good very bad day -- some fundamental things should ideally be in place for all children.
The United Nations realized, soon after its founding, that it had to make some effort to guarantee children certain rights, just as governments granted them to their fully enfranchised, adult citizens. And so, over fourty years ago this week the UN announced its Declaration of Childrenís Rights, as an attempt to raise international consciousness and ultimately to effect international actions. This has since become the United Nationís Convention on the Rights of the Child. Tomorrow is the UNís Universal Childrenís Day, and every year at this time, we reflect on the fact that these rights are still so often and so sadly ignored. We would like to add what we can to the awareness of the need to continue to work to protect children around the world, in order to transform these ideals into realities.
Here, then, are those first Rights of the Child, read by the children of our area:
Brief sound clip
The right to affection, love and understanding
Copyright 2004 © John Cech
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