On the 14th of November every year, India celebrates Children's Day, aiming to acknowledge and promote the wellbeing and education of children. The date, which was former Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's birthday, was chosen to honour Nehru's advocacy for children and education. Our India network marked the day with celebratory activities.
In Assam, various members of the India network met at a village school to celebrate, including staff members from Seva Kendra, and sisters from Srikona, along with women's groups and village committee members. Throughout the day, the children participated in games and gathered to listen to more serious discussions from local advocates.
Sr. Nirmala Ekka RJM delivered a talk about why the day is celebrated, which included a discussion about the importance of education, and the dangers of human trafficking. Remedial teacher, John Peter, gave an address about the importance of the day, and there were further speeches on child rights, education, and living a rewarding, safe life. The motto of the celebration was 'No to child marriage and child labour'.
Above: Group activities in Assam.
Elsewhere in Assam, one of our network groups organised celebratory programmes at all 10 Children's Clubs in their operating area. Their main focus was children who are not going to schools, or who dropout from school, and all who are generally non-privileged in the society. 150 children were involved, and competitions were run for the children.
Across the celebrations and activities, children were advised about the risks that traffickers pose to them. Advocates spoke to children about child labour and child marriage, and about the rights that children have. Sr Pauline, of the Bethany convent, gave a speech on education, and Sr Sherly Thomas, Arise India Coordinator, spoke to the children about dangerous migration, child trafficking, and long-term safety. The children were attentive, and keen in discussion, enjoying and learning throughout the day.