From 2011 to 2013 the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund (the Fund) and the Ministry of Women, Children and People with Disabilities came together to create a platform where children could raise their issues. This platform was then known as the Nelson Mandela Children’s Parliament. When the ministry was dissolved, the Fund together with the National Department of Social Development and Save the Children South Africa collaborated and continued with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Parliament (NMCP).
Each year, children representatives from all provincial districts attend the children’s parliament, where they elect their peers to become ambassadors to serve for a year and represent their respective provinces. In addition to this, the ambassadors elect a speaker and a president that will preside over the proceedings. Over the years’ children have presented their declaration to government and leaders of civil society on issues that affect them with little response to their concerns. As a result, the provincial ambassadors, speakers, presidents and Efeng Bacha (the Fund’s advisory committee which is made up of children & you), have come together to develop the 1st South African Children Manifesto.
The manifesto is a call to all political parties, government at all levels, private sector, Chapter 9 institutions, labour movements, State Owned enterprises and Broader Civil Society Organisations to engage, adopt, commit and implement the priorities of the South African Children’s Manifesto.
The Children’s Manifesto is a response to the President’s call in his 2019 SONA that stated “Our programmes must be measured, first and foremost, by the impact they have on our children. Though they constitute a third of our population, though they hold within their hands the future of our nation, the voice of our children is seldom heard.”
They cannot vote, they do not set policy, and are therefore easily ignored. Yet their interests must be placed at the forefront of our policies as future leaders of this country.
The children will present to political parties and government issues pertaining the four pillars of section 28 of the South African Constitution, UNCRC, ACRWC, international, regional and domestic legislative instruments
- Child Protection
- Child Development
- Child Survival
- Child Participation
Guest Speakers Include:
Angie Makwetla: Human Rights Commissioner
Sibongile Mkhabela: CEO – Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund
Theo van Westhuizen – 2017 Nelson Mandela Children’s Parliament President
Venue: Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital (Seminar Room)
6 Jubilee Road, Parktown, Johannesburg, 2193
Date: 16 March 2019
Time: 10:00 – 12:00
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