Children and adolescents should grow up in a protective and supportive, family-based environment, with time for study and play. When they experience harm, children are resilient and with a supportive environment, most children are able to recover and develop to their full potential. However, recent global studies show that up to 3 in 4 children are victims of abuse and violence within the home. The last decade has also witnessed a shift in cross border migration and displacement globally with children consistently making up more that 50%. In situations of crisis and conflict, a child’s vulnerability to experiences of violence and adversity increases significantly and they become less resilient to the stresses they experience. They are exposed to unsafe environments and are at higher risk of violence and abuse, being recruited by armed groups, losing their parents and family members, being subjected to sexual violence, trafficking and other harmful practices. Their support network, including their families and communities are weakened and access to education, health and social services is disrupted. These children are denied their basic rights to survival, development and participation. The IRC’s approach to child protection is rooted in three core beliefs:
- Girls and boys are entitled to grow up in an environment that is free from violence, that upholds their rights and supports achievement of their full potential;
- Girls and boys have the right to be active participants in their own protection and development;
- Families, communities, and governments play a fundamental role in caring for, supporting, and protecting children.
What we do
The IRC’s child protection programs ensure that children are safe, can exercise their rights and cared for, ideally in a family or family-like environment that promotes their physical, social, emotional, cognitive and economic well-being. To achieve this, we collaborate with a range of partners, including children themselves, families, communities, social workers, civil society, non-governmental organizations and Government structures. Everything we do is underpinned by thorough research and evaluation, with the IRC participating in global discussions on effective child protection practices.
To achieve change in the lives of children, IRC adopts three core approaches:
- Immediate protection
- Creation of protective environments in the home and community
- Strengthening systems
IRC teams around the world celebrating World Children’s Day!
Inclusion for Every Child!
Every year, on 20th November, World Children’s Day is celebrated! This years theme was inclusion For Every Child. Whilst children around the world celebrate the day that the convention on the rights of the child (CRC) was signed, the full realization of child rights remains far from achieved.
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) joined the international community in calling for a more inclusive and equal world for every child. IRC teams across the world, came together with children of all ages to celebrate World Children’s Day on the 20th of November 2022. Despite progress made, serious violations against children remain widespread. Alarmingly, no single country can attest to ensuring all children have their full set of rights. 103 million people have been forcefully displaced by 2022, with almost half being children (UNHCR Mid-Year Trends Report).
As a result, children face a host of extreme stressors in their life, including violations against their right to survival, their right to be free from physical violence, their right to be protection from their exploitation in the worst forms of child labor, severe neglect, and other violations including, sexual abuse and separation from family.
Other serious violations of children’s rights incudes children’s lack of access to birth registration, the detention of children, and children’s exclusion from services as a result of disability. In many cases, these violations have become normalized.
All over the world children came out in numbers to be seen and heard and to demand their rights.
Children have spoken. How are you going to advocate and take action to ensure children have full access to their rights?