The United Nation’s Universal Children’s Day was established in 1954 and is celebrated on November 20th each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children’s welfare. November 20th is an important date as it is the date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. It is also the date in 1989 when the UN General assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Since 1990, Universal Children’s Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the declaration and the convention on children’s rights.
Save the Children is pleased to commemorate Universal Children’s Day this year with an event on November 21st that will focus on the theme: Stop Violence Against Children! According to UNICEF, every year millions of children around the world become victims of untold violence. Children in every country, every culture and at every social level face various forms of abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence. The abuse takes place at home, in school, in institutions, at work, in the community, in armed conflict and natural disasters. Much violence against children, such as corporal punishment and sexual abuse, remains legal and socially approved in many countries. The violence children face takes many forms, such as exploitation and abuse, trafficking, physical and humiliating punishment, harmful traditional practices (including early marriage and genital mutilation/cutting) and recruitment into armed forces and groups. Growing up with violence and abuse seriously affects a child’s development, dignity, and physical and psychological integrity.