Honoring and protecting our children

thNovember 20, 2013 – When I was a kid, each time we celebrated Mother’s Day or Father’s Day, I would ask, “When is kid’s day?”

My parents’ response was always the same. “Every day is kid’s day.”

Turns out, kids do have a special day, and it is celebrated today, and each November 20.

Universal Children’s day, established in 1925 is almost as old as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, first celebrated in 1914 and 1910 respectively. It holds more importance than a simple greeting card holiday, as it promotes the welfare of children around the world. In honor of this special day, the United Nations adopted the Convention on the Rights of a Child on November 20, 1989, which grants children the right to be heard in matters that concern them.

The day is also meant to bring awareness to children around the globe who are abused, exploited, and discriminated against. Part of the Convention on the Rights of a Child prohibits the worst forms of child labor including slavery, prostitution, and child pornography. Unfortunately, there are still about 153 million children worldwide between the ages of 4 and 14 who are forced into child labor. By raising awareness, Universal Children’s Day hopes one day to end those atrocities.

I am thankful I grew up in a home where my parents’ respected my rights, and allowed me to be a kid. I passed on those traditions to my child, and I hope that one day he will do the same. For all of those children globally who may not be as fortunate, Universal Children’s Day provides hope that someday all children will have the love and respect they deserve. That can’t come soon enough.

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