Hundreds of children call on local Assembly to protect their Child Rights

Challenging Heights —  January 29, 2016

For Immediate Release – Challenging Heights in partnership with the Canadian High Commission today supported hundreds of children in Senya Beraku in demanding their child rights be secured and protected. Children from over 20 different schools formulated a communiqué to Awutu Senya West District Assembly at the end of a Child Rights conference held in the town.

The theme of the day was “Child Rights is your Responsibility!” and commenced with approximately 450 children being empowered to learn about their rights. Participants then explored the responsibility of different members of society in protecting child rights, including family, community, civil society and state institutions.

The event culminates with a presentation by the children setting out their expectations of the local assembly in meeting its responsibilities. The Chief Executive of Awutu Senya West District Assembly, Hon Sampson Nee Armah Abbey was invited responded to the communiqué with a commitment to lead on protecting and promoting child rights in the district.

Challenging Heights is grateful for the Assemblies engagement but believes more needed to be done at all levels in society: “We all have a responsibility for Ghana’s children, from parents to parliamentarians”. We call on all ministries to ensure they played their part: “Schools can keep children safe, but the Ministry of Education must ensure the capitation grant is released on time; LEAP helps protect children, so we ask the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection to expand the programme to coastal areas as promised last year. More must be done to stop child trafficking, but again this year the budget allocated to the Human Trafficking Fund has not been released.
For its part Challenging Heights is continuing to educate and sensitize communities on child labour and trafficking, and providing education and livelihoods support to some of the neediest families. The conference organisers put out the following call: “Let none of us walk by on the other side when we see children’s rights abused: mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, teachers and elders, community leader and chiefs, police and immigration officers, social workers and welfare officers, assembly men and women, MPs, Ministers and Mr President – we ask you all to do your duty and accept that ‘Child Rights are your Responsibility!’.”

During the event visiting dignitaries including the representatives from Ghana Education Services, Social Welfare and the Tuofohene of Senya were entertained by traditional dancing and singing performances by the Challenging Heights School choir and cultural troop.

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