26th September 2017, Lucknow
Phia Foundation strongly believes that violation of child rights and development is a critical issue that deserves intense and holistic action in Uttar Pradesh. We believe without collective efforts, infringement on child rights will continue in our society. To work towards the common cause of child rights, UNICEF & PHIA Foundation took a joint initiative named Coalition on Child Rights & Development (CCRD) and stared its implementation through 14 Civil Society Organizationsin 14 districts with 104 other network partners in state of Uttar Pradesh. Major objective of CCRD in the first year is to motivate out-of-school children especially from socially excluded groups to go to school and aims at sensitizing the communities, specially the School Management Committees (SMCs) to ensure the retention and enrolment.
Towards this joint initiative, we had a launch programme on 26th September 2017, in Lucknow, at Dayal Paradise, Gomti Nagar. The launchstarted with opening remark of Mr. Prashant Kumar, State Manager Phia foundation and Mr. Ritwik Patra, Education Specialist, Unicefsetting the context and need of on Child Rights &Development in Uttar Pradesh followed by a remarkable speech of our Hon’ble Chief Guest Dr. Reeta Bhahuguna Joshi, Cabinet Minister for Women & Child Welfare, Government of Uttar Pradesh. She appreciated Phia Foundation and UNICEF for taking this joint initiative on Child Rights and Development and strongly stated that this initiative should be taken forward as a campaign rather than a project. Emphasizing on the collective efforts she said, “Government cannot address all social issues alone, each and everyone should come forward and work together to addresssocial issues like violation of child rights, child labor, child abuse and much more prevalent in the society.” She suggested developing a healthy competition among CSOs and felicitating the best one for their relentless efforts. She encouraged the CSOs and other local networks present in the event and motivated them to work with passion and enthusiasm and take failure as a challenge.
Ms. Semeda, Head of India Program, Change Alliance,Mr. Ram Kumar Dynamic Action Group, Ms Kanchan Sinha, Gender Activist, Ms. Pius, Unicefalong with our CSO partners shared their views during the event. Event has also marked presence of SMC members, media, and local networks and other development agencies. Ms. Semeda sharing PHIA’s vision stated that CCRD should be a partner led campaign as in partnership lies the core strength. She advocatedfor a strong alliance should be established with organizations, CSO, NGOs, media, and other like-minded networks and groups for its implementation at large scale addressing the issues of social exclusion. Mr. Ramkumar threw light on the role of Civil Society Network in addressing social issues& brought attention to the need of promoting social inclusion through our initiative. Further, Ms. Kanchan Sinha strongly stated that gender discrimination is a critical issue in our society so focus should be given on gender equality working on child rights and development. In addition, Ms. Piyush expressed her views on a discrimination free society and its significance. She stated that we should endeavor to create a zero-discrimination society in near future through continuous efforts.
Ms. Reshma, SehbhagiShiskhan Kendra highlighted the journey of CCRD through a presentation. In addition, some of our CSO nodal partners also shared their experiences. Mr. Prashant, State Manager, PHIA Foundation stated that he envisages a possible opportunity for a convergence through our existing program and resources to building larger momentum and long-term impact. He concluded the event by expressing his gratitude to all the guests and with a commitment to achieve the goals of CCRD through relentless efforts and dedication.