With our african partners in Togo, Mali, Benin and Cameroon, we are translating important children’s rights into local languages and cultural contexts in order to render these norms more accessible to rural pupulations in our project areas.
A practical guide with children’s rights in simple frnech and 7 local languages from Togo can now be downloaded here.
All children around the world have inalienable, fundamental rights. In order to implement children’s rights comprehensively and sustainably, everybody needs to contribute: parents, the social community and children themselves. However, the essential elements of the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of the Child as well as the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child are little known and even less understood in rural areas of our partner countries. Hence, information on children's rights has to be spread in local languages during awareness-raising and education campaigns.
Yet, in many African languages, there is no equivalent for the rights of children. An often used translation is the power of children, which causes confusion and rejection throughout the population in all of our project regions and opposes child rights activism. It is thus necessary to translate these texts into local languages using colloquial expressions, traditional sayings and examples from every-day life.
Children are better protected as their social community knows about their rights as well as about the responsibilities of adults, parents in particular and children. A guide with a culturally adapted and commented translation of important rights and duties is being developed by local linguists, child rights experts and community groups.
The commented guides will be used by:
In Mali, Togo, Benin and Cameroon, children's rights are being translated and explained in a culturally adapted way by liguists and our partner organisations. These definitions and their explanations are being tested in practice before the edition of a commented guide in the most common languages of our project regions. In these tests local networks, associations and groups of adults and children contribute to finding understandable and acceptable definitions. The publications are then being distributed amoung child rights activists, media and other key agents who are active in awareness-raising. In Togo, a first guide was completed in 2016. You can download it here:
Impressions from the working sessions in Togo with State, traditional and religious Authorities, local communities and linguists:
Cover picture: When social workers talk to children and adults in rural areas about children's rights, they use local languages, culturally adapted expressions, traditional sayings and examples from every-day life. © ALDEPA
Kinderrechte Afrika e. V.
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