See my rights through my eyes
On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the UNCRC, Save the Children opened the jubilee week with the activity “See my rights through my eyes”. This activity promoted the right of children to participation through the sharing of best experiences of children, as activists in protecting and promoting their rights. Through their speeches and face to face communication with authorities, children and Roma youth representatives addressed issues concerning children and youth in their regions and mentioned achivements reached so far due to children involvement. They also mentioned how beneficial their engagement is for their individual development and local community.
The Albanian reality of applying the rights of children to participate in formulation and implementation of development policies affecting their own future is far from being satisfactory. Children lack opportunities to participate in decision-making processes and their views and interests are frequently disregarded in school and local community. There are no mechanisms in place at local level, nor will from decision makers and adults to make possible children’s involvement on issues affecting them. The lack of institutional practices facilitating children’s participation in decision making is a concern for the consolidation of democratic governance, as well as the achievement of sustainable social and economic development in Albania. Save the Children in Albania considers child participation as vital for the positive development of children as individuals, and in the longer term for society as a whole. Children need to be involved actively rather than just being told what to do. Child participation is key principle of Save the Children program which actively works to ensure that all children are given an opportunity to participate and voice their opinion. In order to achieve this, Save the Children supports six Child-and Youth Led Groups (CLGs) in different regions of Albania. Children and young people of these groups manage and run their own informal organizations. They plan, organize, implement and evaluate their own activities.
Vice Minister of Ministry of Education and Sport, Vice Minister of Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth, Head of State Agency for the Protection of Children Rights, Director of National Historical Museum, Child Led Groups and Roma youth and civil society organizations took part in this activity.