Supporting early childhood education professionals worldwide
in their efforts to craft thriving environments for children and adults.
By Moss, Norway • June 1-4, 2012Go to page: 1 2
During the 2011 World Forum, a group of delegates began talking about the possibility of developing a Working Group on Children's Rights. They considered this an opportunity for those who are passionate about the rights of children to launch a global initiative, using the World Forum Foundation and the World Forum on Early Care and Education as a platform. Presentations by panelists and reflections and support by participants at the World Forum inspired the organization of a Working Forum Global Working Initiative on Children's Rights. Goals for the initiative included learning about the work of existing groups surrounding children's rights, determining the need for a World Forum Working Group on Children's Rights, developing initial goals for this Working Group, and planning preliminary strategies for accomplishing these goals.
Children's rights advocates from Brazil, Canada, India, Norway, Oman, Singapore, the United States, and Wales met at the American College of Norway. The meeting began with a question: How did you get to this chair? The introduction to one another, through a sharing of our favorite chairs and the reasons we had made the journey to Moss, marked the beginning of the formation of many wonderful relationships within a community dedicated to children's rights. During the ensuing days, we shared our work, reflected on each other's work, identified common threads and interests, and developed a set of 'big threads' andgoals and tasks that we wanted to pursue as a Working Group. Throughout our days together, we shared home-cooked food, walks through Moss, visits to preschools in the forest and by the sea, and many, many stories. And we played with wire, weaving our individual creations together, as we were weaving together our work and our lives. Each of us left transformed by the experience, with a desire to deepen the relationships we had formed and to begin the work to which we had committed. We came together as a group of people, unrelated in many ways, many of us perfect strangers; but through our shared passion for children's rights, we were able to find our similarities, acknowledge our differences, and become friends. This is the power of the World Forum.
We developed a document outlining the Guiding Principles of the World Forum Working Group on Children's Rights. The document reads:
• We will be self-reflective about our reasons for being engaged in this work and how we will proceed.
• We will seek and see multiple perspectives and multiple contexts for children's rights as the basis for action.
• We will ensure that the child's voice is heard and represented authentically and protected from tokenism and/or exploitation.
• We will approach children's rights in context and in all their complexity.
• We will use the CRC as a guiding tool for our work.
• We will ensure that our work is globally accessible.
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