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Importance of Child Rights
Child Rights are fundamental freedoms and the inherent rights of all human beings below the age of 18. These rights apply to every child, irrespective of the child's parent's / legal guardian's race, color, sex, creed or other status.
The essential message is equality of opportunity. Girls should be given the same opportunities as boys. ALL children should have the same rights and should be given the same opportunity to enjoy an adequate standard of living.
Child rights maybe broadly classified as the rights of all children to:
- Protection, and
Why are child rights important?
Children are innocent, trusting and full of hope. Their childhood should be joyful and loving. Their lives should mature gradually, as they gain new experiences. But for many children, the reality of childhood is altogether different.
Right through history, children have been abused and exploited. They suffer from hunger and homelessness, work in harmful conditions, high infant mortality, deficient health care and limited opportunities for basic education, A child need not live such a life. Childhood can and must be preserved. Children have the right to survive, develop, be protected and participate in decisions that impact their lives.
CRY America focuses on the 4 basic rights of children. These were defined in 1989, by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, an international human rights treaty to which 191 countries, including India, are signatories. The Charter of Child Rights is built on the principle that "ALL children are born with fundamental freedoms and ALL human beings have some inherent rights".
The Charter confers the following four basic rights on all children across the world:
The Right to Survival - to life, health, nutrition, name and nationality. The right to survival entails the right to a healthy life. This means that children should be rightfully assured of adequate nutrition and quality healthcare. Their names be registered as citizens to access state nutritional schemes. Infant and child mortality should be curtailed and malnourishment should not be a concern.
The Right to Development - to education, care, leisure, recreation. Every child has the right to development that lets the child explore her/him full potential. To an education that that not only lead the child to a path of learning but promotes understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and should contribute to maintenance of peace.
The right to Protection - from exploitation, abuse, neglect Right to Protection entails that all children be nurtured and protected from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation in any form. It rages from a child's right to be protected from, having to work, to face any kind of physical or mental abuse and to have a caring, secure family.
The right to Participation - to expression, information, thought and religion. This is a right where the child is involved in the decisions take about her/his life and has the space to develop & express independent thought.
CRY America works to ensure these rights to all underprivileged children who could be street children, girl children, children bonded in labour, children of commercial sex workers, physically and mentally challenged children and children in juvenile institutions. CRY UK believes all citizens must be accountable for ensuring child rights for every child in the country.