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Children and young people take the lead

According to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, all children have the right to participate in the decisions that affect their lives.

Supporting opportunities for children and young people to access information and to voice their opinions is integral to Plan's work. In our experience, when children participate – whether developing national policy on child protection or discussing the quality of teaching at school – it results in decisions that better respond to their needs and concerns, contributing to improved development outcomes over the longer term.

Developing skills

Overseas and in the UK, Plan supports children and young people to develop the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to make more informed decisions about their health, education, sexuality, environment and livelihoods.

Plan recognises that certain groups of children and young people face disproportionate obstacles in overcoming poverty and realising their rights.

Girls and young women in particular are supported to ensure that their voices are heard and acted upon. Plan also works with parents, teachers and government authorities, to support them to recognise and respond to young people’s concerns.

A unique perspective

Plan has found that children and young people not only bring a unique perspective to community development work; they can also be counted on to offer the innovative ideas and enthusiasm required to drive change.

For example, in countries such as El Salvador and the Philippines Plan has supported children to take part in advocacy and lobbying on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. This ranges from coordinating risk mapping in their communities to presenting at UN high level meetings.

Child clubs in Kenya have addressed the sensitive issue of HIV and AIDS in an open way, inspiring the adults in their communities to become involved in community efforts to prevent disease spread. Young journalists in Haiti spoke out against domestic violence on their radio show, forcing adults to respond.

Plan also works with schools and youth groups to support young people to link together to learn about and take action on key issues such as girl’s rights and gender equality.

Key publications

Latest News
  • Four girls are rowing for girls across the Atlantic as part of the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge. Here are four reasons why they need your support.
  • Earlier this week, we partnered with dating app Happn to shine the light on the 41,000 girls around the world who are forced into marriage every day. Hundreds of users took to social media in response to our stunt. Here we take a look at how the public reacted.
Latest Blogs
  • In a remote region in Timor-Leste, Plan is constructing toilets, handwashing facilities and water supplies in 18 schools and helping schools to organise hygiene clubs. John McGown tells us about hygiene promotion day in Erehetu.
  • Steve Williams has just returned from a visit to the Syrian refugee camps in Lebanon. Here he shares stories from the camps and explains the biggest difficulties facing refugees stuck inside the camps.

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