September 28, 2006

Child Participation in National Plan of Action and National Policy Planning Process (Nepal)

Some very interesting points in this document on children & media.

Any similar examples from other countries???



Child Participation in National Plan of Action and National Policy Planning Process (Nepal)

Childrens from child cluns of 37 districts (5 developmental regions) of Nepal were participated in the National Child Club Conference during September 4-8, 2006 in Kathmandu. 80 children (45 boys and 35 girls) of 40% Ethnic group, 20% of dalit and 40% of other groups were participated. The theme of the event was "Bringing about change.....Children's rights to participation". The Children presented their outcomes with the higher Government officials of Nepal Government, Representatives of Political parties and the Team of Media Personnels on September 7, 2006 at Hotel Annapurna, Kathmandu.

Child Participation in National Plan of Action and National Policy Planning Process:

1. Children?s Participation in planning, policy making and implementation

a. Child participation needs to be included at village level in the processes of making plans and policies for children.
b. Implementation of Child participation needs to be done from district level.
c. The local Child Clubs in the district needs to form child advisory committees from village to district levels.
d. The village district committee also needs to consider the suggestions of the children when allotting budgets for children?s programmes.
e. Children need to be clearly informed when planning for programmes regarding children are being laid out for the national plan. The children need to be informed about how much budget has been allotted for their programmes and information about the implementation process and programme progress need to be specified from village to district levels.
f. In the process of the drafting the new constitution, children should be consulted by the constitution drafting committee.

2. Some issues regarding children that needs to given utmost consideration are as follows;

a. In the peace process that is currently underway, children?s participation needs to be addressed by both the Government and the Maoists.
b. A law against the involvement of children in armed conflict needs to be formed and strictly adhered to.
c. Schools need to be declared zones of peace and no party or armed group should enter schools nor use the school grounds for any purpose, as a rule of law.
d. A programme, which provides education, protects and reintegrates children associated with armed groups, needs to be initiated at village and district levels.
e. Child rights concerning the right to live, right to protection, right to development and right to participation should be included within civil rights in the new constitution.
a. Higher studies (10+2) should be provided to children free of cost, of quality and be all-inclusive. Moreover, secondary schooling needs to be made compulsory.

How can Child Participation in programme planning processes of INGO/NGOs be increased?

a. A committee of children advisors, representing children from all backgrounds, should be formed to participate in the decision making process of all INGO/NGOs programmes for children.
b. A rule, which includes children?s participation in the planning and implementation of children?s programmes, needs to be formed.
c. INGO/NGOs should present the views that have been put forward by Child Clubs and relevant forums in the implementation of their programmes.
d. Capacity building training of children needs to be developed and provided so that children are able to make the right decisions with prior knowledge and skill development regarding child rights cases in court.
e. Timely information needs to be dispersed regarding the programmes being conducted by INGO/NGO and Children need to have been given full information about the programmes being implemented also be made to understand the intricacies of the programme.
f. It is imperative that the institutions working with children?s issues take their voices to the concerned government institutions and the media.
g. Assistance should be given to all child clubs at local levels to network at national level.
h. All programmes being conducted by INGO/NGO should be written in simple language so that children can understand and also be conducted at a time convenient for children, in a way which is suitable and liked by children available in various mediums which can also be taken to the village level.
i. In every aspect, child participation should be encouraged and supported.
j. Negative portrayal of children?s issues should be not be used
k. Child Participation should not be a one off activity but should be included from the beginning of the programme and seen through to its conclusive end.

1. Issues to be considered to increase Child Participation in Media

a. Every media house needs to include a children?s advisory committee to increase Child Participation
b. Mediums like Radio and Television should produce interaction programmes with child club members to make their voices heard.
c. Media houses should produce separate programmes or channels for children. For instance, films, songs, poetry and theatre
d. Media houses needs to give priority to children?s writing, thoughts and ideas/issues.
e. Media people need to visit rural areas and report regarding children?s issues in those areas. These reports should be given broadcast priority.
f. Media houses need to give priority to bringing children to the platform provided by media.
g. Children should also be encouraged to participate in not just programmes designed for children but also those programmes designed for adults.
h. If the media house is presenting a children?s programme then children should also be involved in its production.
i. The programmes for children should be broadcast at a suitable time for children.
j. Success stories of child clubs should be covered during programmes to set examples.
k. Programmes to include child participation, to reach all levels, government, INGO/NGO, civil society, should be produced

2. The issues that need to be considered while producing and broadcasting children?s programmes

a. A report should be broadcast if and only if there is fact and proof of occurrence of an incident
b. By understanding the psychology of children programmes should be produced and these programmes should be presented in a positive light.
c. Programmes should be produced by keeping in mind the sentiments of the people. Care should be given not to broadcast images or use words that may disturb children.
d. Respect Children?s ideas.
e. Children?s talents should be promoted in the media/
f. Programmes which are suitable for children should also be given space
g. News should be reported in an unbiased manner.
h. Child Rights and development should be given priority in coverage.
i. All children should understand the language used by all media houses. Sentence structuring should be simple.
j. Negative words and pictures should not be used during reporting or broadcast
k. The ideas of differently-able children should be give top priority
l. Children?s artistic work e.g. poems articles should be published.
m. Usage of inappropriate pictures for reports should be avoided.
n. No news, which affects the hopes of children should be printed or broadcast.
o. No news should be reported without understanding the situation and the effects of it on the community
p. Do not misuse children?s image in advertisements
q. Public service announcements against discrimination and child marriage should be broadcast.
r. Development work carried out by children should be printed and broadcast.
s. While publishing photographs, permission should be sought first. Moreover, negative pictures, which will affect children, should not be published. It is imperative to keep in mind when publishing pictures, that in certain situations, children?s identities need to be protected.
t. Child journalist should be given respect and encouraged to participate.

Source: Child Participation in South Asia
Chris Schuepp
Young People's Media Network - Coordinator
Youth Media Consulting GbR
c/o ECMC (European Centre for Media Competence)
Bergstr. 8 / 11th floor
D-45770 Marl - Germany
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