GAMBIA: Children join millions to vote for 2014 'Child Rights Hero'

[13 February 2014] -

The nominees for the 2014 World’s Children’s Prize, which was unveiled recently, according to a press release from the organisers through the Child Protection Alliance (CPA) in The Gambia, were selected by a jury of children from 15 countries.

“Since its launch in 2000, 35 million children have participated in this annual educational programme for the rights of the child and democracy. It includes a Global Vote, where millions of children decide who should receive the World’s Children’s Prize, which is often called ‘the Children’s Nobel Prize,” the release explained.

It noted that children in The Gambia are involved in the process, indicating that the patrons of the WCP include Aung San Suu Kyi, Nelson Mandela and H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden.

Empowering vulnerable children

The majority of the 35 million children who have participated in the WCP programme since its launch in 2000, according to the release, are disadvantaged children, who have learned for the first time that they have rights. This, it noted, has given them faith in the future, and the courage to dare to demand respect for their rights.

“The annual programme concludes with a democratic Global Vote, where children work together to choose their Child Rights Hero. Global Vote Days are held in schools all over the world, with everything that is needed for a democratic election – from returning officers to hand-made ballot boxes and polling booths. So far the greatest number voting in one year has been 7.1 million. The three nominees are selected by a global Child Jury, whose members are experts in the rights of the child through their own life experiences, as child soldiers, debt slaves and more,” it further indicated.

Global legend patrons

The five Nobel Prize Laureates, it continued, are patrons of the World’s Children’s Prize, along with three global legends: Aung San Suu Kyi, Xanana Gusmão, freedom fighter and Prime Minister of East Timor, and Nelson Mandela, who has said of the World’s Children’s Prize, “You have our support, whether we are alive or in the grave.”

Other patrons, it added, include H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden and members of independent global leader group ‘The Elders’, Graça Machel and Desmond Tutu. “The WCP programme is supported by almost 60,000 schools with 29.3 million students in 109 countries, and by departments of education, media projects and over 600 organisations. Since its launch, over half a million teachers have been trained in child rights education.

The principal funder of the World’s Children’s Prize Foundation is the Swedish Postcode Lottery. Other partners include ECPAT Sweden, Sida (the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency), the Survé Family Foundation, Giving Wings, The Body Shop, eWork and Grupo Positivo,” the release noted.

Nominees to be honoured in Sweden

All three nominees, disclosed, will be honoured at the Award Ceremony at Gripsholm Castle in Mariefred, Sweden, in October 2014, where H.M. Queen Silvia of Sweden will help the children present the awards.

“The prize money has helped tens of thousands of the world’s most disadvantaged children towards a better life. This year, the prize money of USD 100,000 will be used to help children of prisoners and to support the fight for every child’s right to go to school - especially girls,” the release concluded.


Please note that these reports are hosted by CRIN as a resource for Child Rights campaigners, researchers and other interested parties. Unless otherwise stated, they are not the work of CRIN and their inclusion in our database does not necessarily signify endorsement or agreement with their content by CRIN.