As defined by UNCRC, child rights are basic rights that every individual under the age of 18 is entitled to, irrespective of their caste, creed, religion, nationality, gender, socio-economic status, disability or any other criteria.
Child rights are specifically defined as until a certain age, legal adulthood age in respective countries, every child and adolescent is dependent on her family, system and the government system. It is these rights and entitlements that ensure that each child gets what she deserves.Child rights are broadly divided in the following categories to summarise the basic needs of a child:
1. Right to survival.
2. Right to protection.
3. Right to development.
4. Right to participation.
Humans, of all ages have a mind of their own and the right to environment and facilities that support optimal and complete development of body as well as mind.
How do we go about it?
Under this very vertical, we have so far run some very successful campaigns/programs.
In 2017, our first rights campaign revolved around spreading awareness of child rights among the masses. Youth from across the state participated in the campaign and shared their experience over social media.
Since 2018, under ‘Right to development’ we have been running another campaign focusing on spreading awareness as well as exercise of Right to Education (RTE) Act of India. With this campaign Bucket List took a major leap into the arena of child rights. While we had worked on child rights awareness in the past too, this campaign took us a step ahead with us very actively working on advocacy, and on ground action.
The 3rd program, supporting the right to survival and protection of underprivileged children began when we noticed it’s dire need through the pandemic in 2020. Some of the already vulnerable children became even more so with problems like loss of family livelihood or inaccessibility to medical facilities for treatment if life altering conditions. Once we have identified these children and understood their hardships, we set out to find solutions for them, like supporting them in accessing any possibly helpful aids provided by government or find donors.
Eventually, Bucket List intends to be working towards an overall development of the communities we work with, in terms of every individual conscious of his and her rights and how to provide them to oneself as well as to someone in need.
We want to support communities of our society in becoming a family where no one is stripped off their basic human rights, irrespective of class, colour, gender, wealth or vulnerability.
But is declaration of rights enough?
Can a child go to school if she has no clue that it’s free and no one can stop her from doing so? Can a child survive just because the country has a law declaring it? Obviously not.
For a child to exercise her rights, what she needs first and foremost is awareness. Not just her own, but more importantly - that of her surroundings. Until & unless her family knows about the ways they might be stripping the child of her rights or the many ways of exercising, and in turn benefitting through, the rights - a child will never reap the results of lawmakers’ efforts.
Consequently, a wholesome benefit of rights only comes when there is the perfect balance of awareness and implementation of rights.
The closer you come to ground reality, the more you realise the gigantic gap between idealistic concepts and their realistic applications. It was this saddening realisation that motivated Bucket List to actively work on rights of children.
The community level reality is extremely different to the ideal vision of our country’s law makers. It is not always easy or even possible to give them specific categories and follow a given process by our judicial system to rectify the situation every time we come across a child under distress and possible victim of child right violation norms. To deal with such situations, we have introduced a system across our communities under which our field staff identifies a- more than respectively usual- vulnerable child and share her/his story with the team. Then, together with all the stakeholders involved and suggestions from relevant experts we plan a way to support the child in coming out of the vulnerable situation.
These ‘vulnerabilities’ range from physical to lack of opportunity. Under this program we have come across young girls not studying in order to look after her siblings because both her parents cant help but go to work or even children with a treatable physical ailment but no resources to seek medical support.
Coming across these heartbreaking realities only make us more determined to find solutions specific to the effected children and ensure that these extremely difficult circumstances do not send them down a hole that they can never climb out of.
RTE Rally 2018
Here is a quick recap of how the Right To Education rally went by.
Help us sustain our efforts and make sure that this vertical runs effectively. Whatever you donate today, big or small, might give a child a better tomorrow, everyday, for years to come.