Children from Around the Globe Implore World Leaders to Act More Like Children to Solve the World's Most Critical Issues of Climate Change, Education and Poverty
NEW YORK, Sept. 21, 2021 The first-ever international Children's General Assembly presented their ideas on creating a better future to the United Nation's General Assembly today, in a virtual meeting that took place between Billund, Denmark, the Capital of Children, and New York. The children's manifesto focused on climate change, education and poverty, and called on world leaders to invest more time and money in education rather than military, and invest more in green energy and technology than in monetary growth.
In their manifesto, the children point to serious issues facing their generation worldwide. "One billion children live in poverty and without access to basic necessities. 617 million children will never get a proper education. Children make up two thirds of the world's refugees. One in seven children experience mental health issues. And all children are affected by the consequences of climate change," said 15-year-old Mankgara Maime from South Africa, one of today's presenters.
The children argue for our leaders to look at the issues from a child's perspective: "We children are born creative and curious. We don't worry about rules. We play, experiment, and make up worlds that do not exist. So perhaps the leaders can learn from us and use creative and curious ways to ensure a better future for children all over the world?" added Mankgara.
The children's presentation to the UN can be seen here.
Earlier this year, children ages 10-17 from 49 different nationalities signed up to participate in the Children's General Assembly and 80 children were selected to represent countries around the globe. They spent many hours in intense, but fun, discussions and workshops online throughout the last six months aligning on world problems that matter most to them. The goal was to present to the UN as one united voice.
The children met in person in Billund, Denmark, September 19-21, 2021, concurrently with the United Nations General Assembly in New York. At 8:00 am EST today, they presented their final manifesto virtually to world leaders including former President of the UN General Assembly, Mogens Lykketoft.
The manifesto was well received. "As adults, we often think about how to teach children democratic values and processes, but after listening to the children in Billund today, I think we can learn just as much from them as they can from us," said Mogens Lykketoft, former President of the UN General Assembly.
The children are just getting started. "We've called on the politicians to take action now and we will hold them accountable to their promises. Next year, when our Children's Assembly convenes, we will ask them, what have you accomplished?" said 13-year-old Anderson Wilkinson from Mt Dora, Florida, who also presented to the UN today.
For additional information, photos and video, please go to: capitalofchildren.com.
About Children's General Assembly:
The Children's General Assembly is developed in collaboration with the Capital of Children Panel, local organizations, and the organization Capital of Children. All children between 10-17 years old can attend the assembly regardless of gender, nationality, religion and disability. At the meeting, children of the world work together to create a manifesto to today's global problems, which they will subsequently deliver to the world leaders at the UN General Assembly in New York. The Children's General Assembly will take place in Billund, Denmark, between September 19-21, 2021.
About Capital of Children:
For almost a century, Billund has had a special focus on children and on the development of children's competencies. For a number of years, politicians, schools and nonprofit foundations have worked together with Billund's children to make Billund a city at child height. In 2020, Billund was recognized by UNICEF as Child-Friendly City and Municipality due to an extraordinary effort for children and children's rights. The ambition was - and is - to create the world's best place for children. And for the world.
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SOURCE Capital of Children
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