On the 26 and 27 May 2022, the Children’s Rights Unit at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria hosted a meeting to validate its draft regional study report on child participation in the implementation of the Global and Regional Development with a focus on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063, and the AU Agenda 2040 for Children. 

The overall objective of the study is to establish the extent to which children are involved in the implementation of the development agendas in Africa.
Specifically, the study:

  • Identifies the extent of awareness of the frameworks amongst children and other key stakeholders
  • Considers geographic representation, map the forums and initiatives for child participation across the continent, and the extent to which these forums and platforms facilitate engagement on development matters
  • Analyses the gaps and opportunities in the implementation of child participation in the development agenda 

Broadly, child participation is one of the general principles of children’s rights. It is a principle that has gained gradual support and acceptance among child rights advocates and practitioners, who, recognise its pivotal role in fostering the optimum development and exercise of rights by children. This growing acceptance notwithstanding, child participation is also one of the least developed areas of rights in practice. There is still significant resistance to children’s participation in mainstream society, which results in either exclusion of their voices, or tokenistic participation that does not meet the threshold of meaningful participation. Although the State has the primary responsibility to ensure children’s rights, a child’s right to participate, in particular, takes place in a range of settings and involves a wide range of actors.

Serval experts from frontline children’s rights organisations, national children's rights commissions, the academia and the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child attended the validation meeting.

For more information, please contact:

Manager: Children's Rights Unit

Tel  +27 (0) 12 420 3587


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