Far from the spotlight of the media and the world’s attention, a humanitarian crisis is playing out in the small, landlocked nation of the Central African Republic (CAR). A savage civil war has forced tens of thousands of people to seek safety in surrounding countries, and as of 31 August 2016, an estimated 385,750 people are internally displaced. Almost half of the displaced are children. The Commission des Mouvements de Populations estimates that 61% of the IDPs are living with host families, and 39% are staying in open spaces and camp-like settings such as schools, churches, and mosques.
Youth roles in development—particularly for youth in the developing world—are limited; they are rarely given true agency or helped to build the capacity to direct the very programs from which they might best benefit....That there are no readily available statistics or metrics by which youth are incorporated into program design processes is in itself an indication that a more intentional focus needs to be placed on the issue of their inclusion. Increasingly over the last decade, a great deal of research—such as that undertaken by ChildFund Australia—has centered on the need for such focus.
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At least four trains arrive daily in Tabanovce, a Macedonian refugee camp near the Serbian border. But when we arrive, it’s deserted. The place feels eerie and empty, showing the transient nature of migrant camps.
Most migrants coming through here arrived from Greece, their landing point in Europe; they pass through Macedonia to Serbia and then, if they’re fortunate, on to Germany and other western European countries. Others take a route through north-western Turkey, Bulgaria and Serbia. Both roads are well known to smugglers, who often make the journeys possible — at a steep cost.
Since the events described here, in the past week violence has broken out in Idomeni, Greece, because of a bottleneck caused by Macedonia’s new daily cap on the number of migrants allowed into the country, as well as other restrictions. Thousands are now stranded in Idomeni and nearby camps, causing serious tension and questions about what will happen next.
Julien, who has worked with ChildFund in Asia and specialises in emergency communications, joined our assessment team as they travelled through Turkey, Greece, Macedonia and Serbia earlier this year, documenting the needs of migrants and asylum seekers from Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, particularly children and youth. This is the first of Julien’s reports from the field.
Thousands of Afghans, Iraqis and Syrians are fleeing their war-torn countries and embarking on a perilous journey to Europe seeking refuge and a better life. In Izmir, a western port city of more than 2 million people in Turkey, many throng the streets, desperate to get to Greece — the entrance to the European Union.
Children’s Voices for the #GlobalGoals is a collection of children’s aspirations, priorities and recommendations for the post-2015 development agenda brought together in an interactive site (http://voices.freefromviolence.org).
The site is being launched by ChildFund Alliance at a special event in New York City today to celebrate the role children’s voices played in the formulation of the post-2015 development agenda, and the protection of children from violence and exploitation being included in the new set of goals and targets. This has been the focus of ChildFund Alliance’s worldwide advocacy campaign over the past three years.
The Global Goals for a world where children are free from violence and exploitation
Over 150 world leaders will attend the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit from 25 to 27 September in New York to adopt the new global goals for the next 15 years. They will commit to 17 universal goals to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and address climate change.
In paragraph 8, our campaign message is there word for word. (highlighted below)
“We envisage a world of universal respect for human rights and human dignity, the rule of law, justice, equality and non-discrimination; of respect for race, ethnicity and cultural diversity; and of equal opportunity permitting the full realization of human potential and contributing to shared prosperity. A world which invests in its children and in which every child grows up free from violence and exploitation…..
As the clock ticks down to the next UN summit when world leaders adopt new global goals*, ChildFund Alliance are calling on people everywhere for a Show of Hands in support of their campaign ‘free from violence and exploitation.’
ChildFund Alliance created their worldwide campaign to ensure that the protection of children from violence and exploitation would become a global priority. They therefore consulted with 16,000 children across 50 countries, capturing their aspirations and thoughts about the new global goals.
Flooding from the recent Cyclone Komen has claimed 180 lives and displaced about 1.2 million people in West Bengal, India, including communities where ChildFund India works.
But there is some positive news: The rain has stopped and the floodwaters are receding, according to reports from our national office in India.
There has been no loss of life among enrolled and sponsored children or their family members in West Bengal, a state in eastern India between the Himalayan Mountains and the Bay of Bengal.