We are delighted to welcome the following post by Edel Quinn. Edel is a member of the Legal and Policy team at the Children’s Rights Alliance. The Alliance is a coalition of over 100 organisations working to secure the rights of children in Ireland, by campaigning for the full implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. It aims to improve the lives of all children under 18, through securing the necessary changes in Ireland’s laws, policies and services.Legal and Policy Officer with the Children’s Rights Alliance. You can read more about Edel and see her previous guest posts on the Contributors’ page.
The voice of the child is a fundamental principle of the UN Convention and in Ireland we are starting to tune in, and pay attention to the views of children and young people. To build on this beginning it is important to continue to give them a platform, and now is the time to give them their voice.
Working with a group of young people, Children’s Right Alliance has a plan to leverage this voice. We have just launched an exciting new film project, spearheaded by a group of young people that will be premiered in early 2013. This short film will explore the effects of Ireland’s 1992 ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, on its laws, policies, and services, as well as on children and young people themselves. This film will be a celebration of the UN Convention and our journey so far in securing its full implementation, here in Ireland.
This is an innovative project that will recognise and value the importance of listening to children and young people. The 2009 Ryan Report found the systemic abuse of thousands of children over decades in industrial schools throughout Ireland. It also uncovered the human cost of not listening to children when they tell us they are victims of abuse. The recent Children’s Referendum will amend the Constitution to oblige judges to listen to children in certain court cases in which they are involved. Let us not forget the importance of listening to children.
The group of young people will not only appear in the film but also shape the direction and content of the film, giving them a fantastic opportunity to gain skills in film development from a professional production company. This new and exciting project will provide us with a snapshot of what it is really like to be a child or young person in today’s Ireland. It will give the young people involved a unique opportunity to voice their opinion, and play a vital role in the ongoing development of children’s rights.
The Alliance really needs your help and support to fundraise for this project. Our fundraising appeal launched onFund it on 19 November and is running for another 10 days at http://www.fundit.ie/project/childrens-rights-alliance-uncrc-film. We have to reach our target of €3,500 by 17th December or we will not receive any of the funding!
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