Young Changemakers Advocate for Child Rights
2 July 2013 at 11:59 am
UNICEF Young Ambassadors will work with youth networks across Australia to connect with key policy makers and parliamentarians to address important child rights issues both in Australia and around the world.
Fourteen UNICEF Young Ambassadors aged between 14 and 23, were chosen from a group of almost 200 applicants for the year-long program.
They have learnt how to engage with other young people to be advocates for change.
16-year-old James Stratton, from Drummoyne, said his appointment as a UNICEF Young Ambassador was important in raising the profile and reputation of his peers.
“Our generation is often accused of being apathetic about the world,” he said.
“But we have the opportunity to be the generation to live in a world where children are free from poverty.”
UNICEF Australia CEO Norman Gillespie said it was important for young people speak for their peers in advocating for child rights.
“We are delighted to welcome these exceptional young Australians into the role as UNICEF Australia Young Ambassadors,” Gillespie said.
“These young people will play an important role garnering the opinions of young Australians on issues most important to them, such as indigenous reconciliation, poverty and foreign aid.
“I look forward to working with them over the next 12 months and seeing them put into practice articles from the Convention on the Rights of the Child that speak to youth participation and giving young people a voice in decisions made on their behalf.”
UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.
It is the world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, and supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, basic education for all boys and girls and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.
In Australia, UNICEF works with Government and advocate bodies to defend children’s rights and support international development programs. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.