It is often said that children are the leaders of tomorrow; but, children are leaders of today, before tomorrow. In fact, whatever we do, we are doing it for the children of tomorrow. It is today’s children who will be the adults and leaders tomorrow. We have a responsibility to leave a good legacy for the future and the future belongs to the children – tomorrow’s adults and leaders.
Prudence would demand therefore, that if we are working for the betterment of the future, we involve the future – the children. It is a fact that when you are building a house for someone, you should ask the person what specification(s) s/he wants in the house considering that s/he is the one who is going to live in the house. As such, the future we want to build for our children will only be relevant if we involve them so we know exactly what they want in their future, their world.
The day set aside by the International Community to celebrate children is therefore a very important step towards sensitizing the people about the rights and needs of the children of the world. Children suffer a lot of abuse of rights around the world due to various reasons. Some of these are obviously avoidable and as such coming together and setting a day aside for this purpose is a step in the right direction. It is a day that should be used to reflect on the needs and aspirations of the children.
In this reflection and stock taking, the children should be in the forefront for, it is they who know what their challenges are, what is it that they want and yearn for, and seek suggestions and solutions from them. This will give them a voice and make them feel involved and as such they will take ownership of whatever decisions and resolutions that we come up with. This is what should happen if we are to move forward in the protection of the rights of the children for now, and the future.