THE VOICE OF CHILDREN

Because children are the first beneficiaries of our actions, we are convinced that they should be consulted, listened to and taken into account.

If all adults respected children’s rights, the country would be much more developed

On April 8th and 9th, around 30 young adolescents and children from certain municipalities in the department of Grand’Anse, affected by cyclone Matthew – Jérémie, Roseau, Bonbon, Chambellan and Marfranc – participated in a consultation session on risk and disaster management. The seminar was organized at the initiative of UNICEF with IDETTE and Methods without Borders as implementing partners.

UNICEF HAITI A picture of the kids and the facilitators

A picture of the kids and the facilitators

The main objective of this consultation was to enable adolescents to express their views on how humanitarian and public actors managed disaster responses; and to talk about their willingness to become involved in disaster preparedness and response in their community.

From the first day, the young people showed their interest in participating in this activity of great importance for the future of their community. The trainers began by raising awareness about children’s rights, which enabled them to get an idea of the state of their knowledge in this area. The vast majority of children were unaware of the existence of the Convention of Children Rights. “We are pleased to know that there is such a text to protect the rights of children,” one of them said.

As with any group, there are some who are more active and more interested than others. Like 12-year-old Rodley Beauchamp in Grade 7, “If all adults respected children’s rights, the country would be much more developed,” he said, his voice full of innocence, applauded by other young participants.

To read the full story, follow the link

6 months after, Liam from Cuba talks about Hurricane Matthew

Liam Manuel, 11 years old tells us how he lived the landfall of Hurricane Matthew in Cuba.

Girls at a secondary school in Tercer Frente, Santiago de Cuba, explain their evacuation procedure

Girls at a secondary school in Tercer Frente, Santiago de Cuba, explain their evacuation procedure

Let me tell you how we lived hurricane Matthew in our community, Yateritas (San Antonio del Sur), in Guantanamo.  Since the informative phase, all the village kept informed of the meteorological reports and once we knew about the possibility of this phenomenon passing through, we started adopting the necessary measures to avoid the loss of human lives and property.  A week before its predicted arrival, us children also contributed in activities to keep things safe.   We helped our families and neighbors to protect kitchenware, clothes, shoes; we were like working ants, from here to there, from over there to here.  I put away very safe my fishing lines and hooks, I love fishing, and I didn’t want to lose them.  My mum put away everything at the house and helped us all, she also took care of protecting the important documents.  We helped my sister, who was six months pregnant, to safeguard all the baby’s things.

To read Liam’s full story, follow that link

Child Heroes in Haiti- My Hero

Today, the youth of Haiti are heroes not waiting for help but taking their futures in their own hands. Discover our campaign ”My Hero”.

Find all our heroes and heroines on the interactive map of ”My Hero in Haiti” and leave us a comment.

Rosemaine from Bainet, a water sanitation champion

Jean Rosemaine has eight brothers and sisters. When one of her brother got cholera, she took really good care of him. Since then, she decided she would become a nurse. Occasionally, she cooks and sells food to be able to pay her fees to go to school.
Some people believe she is a hero… Do you think she is?

Peter- Grand Gosier, the  messenger for sanitation for all

Peter, 14, lives in Nan Rada in the commune of Grand- Gosier located in a remote and rural area in the South East of Haiti. What he has learned on the importance of using a latrine or on the good hygiene practices to avoid diseases, this little messenger of the Community Approach for Total Sanitation disseminated it over and over in his community to help people staying healthy.
Some believe Peter is a hero… Do you think he is?

 Rosemana from Savane Carrée, nutrures her brothers with food, love and cares

Rosemana, 12 years-old, lives in Artibonite. She is a loving and caring sister and daughter. She manages to work to help her family, takes care of her siblings, does the follow up of her 3 little brothers that suffered from malnutrition to make sure they stay healthy . She is also a brilliant student in her class.
Some say she is a hero, do you think she is?

Edyl from Jacmel on his way to freedom

Meet Edyl, 13 years old, from Jacmel. Since his father’s accident he works to provide for the basic needs of his family, and to pay for school when he has enough money for it. Some people believe he is a hero… Do you think he is?

Djolanda from Jacmel, the apprentice sewer who dreams to become a nurse

Djolanda is 11 years-old. She lives with her mother and her two brothers. Since her violent father left home, the girl is concerned for her mother and feels she has a role to play to help provide for the family. Some people believe Djolanda is a hero, do you think she is?

 Clifford from Belladère, the nomad child who dreamed to go to school

Clifford lives in Belladère. From its 14 years, he has, on many occasions, deliberately crossed alone the Haitian border to live in the Dominican Republic. His aim? Finding a job and save enough money to pay for school.
Some people believe he is a hero… Do you think he is?

The following videos are part of The Oneminutesjr initiative which highlights and celebrates diversity among youth around the world. More than 1,000 young people, coming from 70 countries, including Haiti, took part in this programme.

The Oneminutesjr gives 12-20 years-old youngsters, especially those who are underprivileged or marginalised, the opportunity to have their voices heard and to share their ideas, dreams, fascinations, anxieties, and viewpoints with the world. The intimate nature of the videos allows the viewer to be close to each other in spite of geographical and cultural borders.

Children’s drawings

In Haiti, in spite of a series of measures taken by the State to prevent corporal punishment in schools, there is evidence that this scourge is still present in many educational facilities. In this context, the Haitian Ministry for Education, with financial and technical backing from UNICEF thanks to funding from Belgian funds, set up a pilot scheme called Action Against School Violence in Haiti”

This pilot scheme set up in the South-East region consists in developing a Code of Conduct, training school staff to encourage them to use positive discipline and an awareness campaign on violence issues. Through this scheme, pupils expressed their unhappiness and frustration through drawings. While participating in focus groups, they expressed their wish for a total ban on such pratices from their schools.

This test phase will continue until December 2015 and contribute to the qualitative improvement of education in the South-East region.

 

This post is also available in: French