As we approach this year’s CPW campaign, the Department urges South Africans from all walks of life to participate in the campaign and to take real action in protecting children within our families and communities.
In its 22nd year, the campaign will be observed under the theme: “Let us Protect All Children to Move South Africa Forward” and it is commemorated in the country annually to raise awareness of the rights of children as articulated in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and Children’s Act (Act No. 38 of 2005).
The week-long campaign forms part of the 365 days child protection programme of action that the Department of Social Development implements in collaboration with other government departments, civil society organisations and international development agencies.
This year’s campaign coincides with the commemoration of 25 years of freedom and democracy in South Africa. It is therefore essential that we use the CPW campaign to reflect specifically on the strides we have made in observing, protecting and promoting the rights of the child. The campaign also coincides with the 30th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) – an international instrument on the protection of children that South Africa ratified in 1995.
South Africa’s ratification of the UNCRC in its early years of democracy was and still remains government’s pledge for improvement in children’s lives through initiatives and programmes such as primary health care, early childhood development and improved school enrolment, social grants and other services for the protection of children.
Over the years the CPW campaign has helped to ensure that government and all key sectors of the South African society work together to ensure the protection and promotion of the rights of children. Despite the impressive progress that government has made in promoting and protecting the rights of children, significant challenges still remain, more so in the area of child protection.
Key areas of concern include child trafficking for child labour and sexual exploitation, children in conflict with the law, children living and working in the streets, child poverty and access to educational opportunities for children with disabilities, undocumented and unaccompanied children amongst others.
The United Nations has declared June as the Month of Positive Parenting, recognising that families and communities are the first line of our response to child protection issues.
The week-long campaign will highlight activities and initiatives spearheaded by government and civil society organisations will take place throughout the country, focusing on matters affecting the welfare and well-being of South African children, with specific focus on the most vulnerable children, including children with disabilities.
The campaign will kick off with the commemoration of the International Children’s Day on 1 June, where children will be handing over the Children’s Manifesto to government and other entities entrusted with the protection of the rights of children.
The Manifesto urges the incoming 6th administration and all spheres of government to translate children’s rights enshrined in the Constitution into a living reality. The Department is working jointly with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, Save the Children South Africa and South African Human Rights Commission.
The official launch will take place on Sunday, 2 June at the Chris Hani Sports Complex in Orange Farm, Gauteng. As a way to strengthen child participation and to make the voice of children to be heard, the launch will be preceded by dialogues between parents and children in the local communities.
The official closing of the CPW campaign will take place on Sunday, 9 June in eMalahleni-Mpumalanga where issues of child protection, especially the protection of children with disabilities came under the spotlight following the gruesome killing of two minor children, one of them with albinism allegedly for muti purposes.
Members of the media are invited to cover the events as follows:
International Children’s Day
Date: Saturday, 1 June 2019
Venue: Constitution Hill, Braamfontein-Gauteng Province
Official launch of the 2019 Child Protection Week campaign
Date: Sunday, 2 June 2019
Venue: Chris Hani Sports Complex, Orange Farm-Gauteng Province
Official closing of the 2019 Child Protection Week campaign
Date: Sunday, 9 June 2019
Venue: eMalahleni, Mpumalanga Province (exact venue TBC)
The full programme of all 2019 CPW activities will be circulated once finalised and online coverage of the campaign can be tracked using #ChildProtection2019 and #CPW19.
Media can RSVP by contacting Ms Nomfundo Xulu-Lentsoane 066 480 6845 / NomfundoLe@dsd.gov.za or Mr Jaconia Kobue on 012 312 7793 / 063 249 5120 / JaconiaK@dsd.gov.za
ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT
Media enquiries may be forwarded to Ms Lumka Oliphant on 083 484 8067 or LumkaO@dsd.gov.za