Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Turning commitments into Actions on Universal Children’s Day

As Myanmar headed for its historic elections on 8th November 2015, UNICEF ceased the momentum by launching the “Let’s call for one clear winner: CHILDREN” campaign calling on potential future leaders to prioritise children and commit to provide them with a fair start in life.

From July to November 2015 - working in close partnership with the Union Election Commission and the NGOs Child Right Working Group (NCRWG), UNICEF actively engaged with all 91 contending political parties urging them to place investing in children at the centre of the political agenda and to formulate commitments to children in their political manifestos.
From the start of the campaign, UNICEF, Save the Children and the NCRWG outlined a series of policy changes that could dramatically improve the lives of children and their families. These included: Increasing the government budget share for education, health and social welfare from 9% to 15%; fully implementing recently established frameworks that will benefit children; and setting bold new targets for children.
UNICEF targeted Chairs of Political Parties through a number of events, urging them to prioritise children in their manifestos. The “Let’s call for one clear winner: CHILDREN” campaign resulted in 37 parties including children in their campaigns, highlighting education, health and nutrition, social welfare and protection.  This included those parties who won the majority of seats in the new parliament. 
On 20 November,  UNICEF and NCRWG organised a follow up event: “Turning commitments into Actions” to mark Universal Children’s Day. The Forum brought together Myanmar’s future politicians with children, Child rights NGOs, and the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission - to explore how to turn the commitments politicians made to children in your elections campaigns, into actions to provide children with a fair start in life. 
The 2015 election was a time to inspire the future leaders to become champions for children in the new Union Parliament.  UNICEF will now proceed to work with newly elected politicians to explore how to turn the commitments they made to children in their elections campaigns into actions which will benefit children.
©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
On Universal Children’s Day, Bertrand Bainvel, UNICEF Representative to Myanmar, highlighted the parliamentarians’ role in promoting children’s rights in Myanmar, namely by using the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as a powerful tool.
©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
This forum brought together children and Myanmar’s future politicians to explore how the future leaders of Myanmar can take actions in the next 5 years to provide children with a fair start in life
 
©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
Almost 40 politicians pledged their commitments to children’s rights for their next five years mandate.


©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
Through a theatre performance, around 50 children urged new leaders of Myanmar to turn their commitments into actions, for example by asking for civil conflicts to be brought to an end.

©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
The Myanmar National Human Rights Commission, here represented by U Sit Myaing, partnered with UNICEF and the NGOs Child Right Working Group to organise this event which also marked Universal Children’s Day.

©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
During the event, several elected candidates had the chance to highlight what they will do after they take power. Here, Ko Naing Zaw Linn, NLD elected candidate for regional parliament explains his future plans for children.


©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
Elected candidates from Arakan National Party and Mon National Party engaged in a round table discussion with the participating children.

©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
Sa Pong, Popular singer from Eain Mat Sone Yar TV programme, performs at the event, calling for Peace in Myanmar.

©UNICEF Myanmar/Save the children/2015
Group Photo with participating children and the NCRWG team.

 
 
 

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