The International Labor Organization celebrates 100 years of advancing social justice and encouraging decent work in 2019. This Day not only focuses on the appropriate setting for kids to develop and prosper but also provides a chance for government, civil society, schools, youth, women’s organizations and media to engage in the campaign against child labour.
Today, however, there are still 152 million kids in child labour. Child labour takes place in nearly all industries, but 7 out of 10 of these kids work in agriculture.
This International World Day Against Child Labour aka Child Labour Day (12th June), we at Yuvagasm present you some of the youth (The Yuvas) who are doing exemplary work against child labour:
1. ANOYARA, India’s Crusader for Child Rights at the UN
Also known by Indias Malala at 12, Anoyara spent about six months working in a family household and was disturbed and wanted to do something about child labour, but no means were available to her. She became an active member of the Multi-Activity Center for Save the Children (MAC) in her village. She now had just one mission–to ensure that every child gets a happy childhood and is not forced into labour or marriage.
It was Anoyara who was at the helm of the affairs and spearheaded the entire campaign with the support, guidance and coaching from Save the Children. Her exemplary courage and leadership have helped reunite more than 180 trafficked children with their families, prevent 35 child marriages, rescue 85 children from the clutches of child labour and register 200 out-of-school children into schools.
2. Poonam, India
Poonam lives in a slum in Agra city where many road kids are compelled into child labor and denied education. Poonam worked at the age of five and also had to do the housework because she was a girl. She is now a child rights proponent, struggling to eradicate child labour. She is the district secretary of a federation of the street and working children, reporting and intervening in many cases of children’s rights violations, including child abuse, child marriage, right to education and child trafficking.
Poonam says: “Please take care of your children. Give them what they deserve.”
3. AHMED, Yemen
Ahmed of Yemen, despite hard adolescence living in poverty with ten siblings, became the leader of his student union and represented the government of children at UNICEF. He battled a three-year effective fight for fresh legislation on the rights of children to be included in the Yemen Federal Constitution. He continues to battle against early marriage and the recruitment of children in armed conflict and wants to establish a global campaign for children’s rights.
4. Eva, Tanzania
Eva’s parents in Iringa Rural are farmers and she has to assist them with household tasks. She was often compelled to skip college until recently because a four-mile walk away was the closest source of clean water. Frustrated, she wrote a celebrated letter to US President Barack Obama about barriers to education. With assistance, Eva gathered 150,000 signatures of petitions that caused the government to promise clean water and secure school bathrooms.
These young guys prove that you don’t need an age to stand up against a social evil. Let’s take inspiration from these youth and start making our efforts too for the betterment of society and a happy and better world!