How old were you when you started your first job? What were the conditions like?
This week, we’re calling on our friends around the world to spare a thought for the millions of children who are engaged in domestic work. These children are often out of sight and out of mind, far from their homes and prone to abuse and exploitation.
This Wednesday is the World Day Against Child Labour. Share this message and help get the word out.
Find out more here: http://bit.ly/12AnznJ
Yesterday a low pressure area developed off the east coast of the Philippines about 500 kilometres to the east of Surigao del Norte. We got the alert in the afternoon that this weather disturbance had a 30-50% chance of increasing in strength and developing into a tropical cyclone. We’ve been tracking the storm for the past 18 hours or so and we’ve seen that it’s moving north-northwest towards Taiwan.
Thankfully, this weather system now looks unlikely to develop into a tropical cyclone or make landfall. But even so, when a nasty looking patch of weather like this develops, our friends at Plan International Philippines take no chances. The memories of Tropical Storm Sendong and Typhoon Bopha are still fresh in all of our minds.
We’re currently on what we call yellow alert for the current situation. This means we are keeping a close eye on situation and have put our Go Team on standby to be deployed to affected areas right away if a big storm hits. We’ve alerted all our suppliers of relief items so that in the event of a disaster, we can start responding right away. This may seem like a lot of effort to put in when the reality is that it’s likely just a false alarm, but being prepared for a disaster is crucial.
As it stands, Bicol, Visayas and Mindanao are going to be in for a wet day or 2, but hopefully nothing more. We’ll keep you posted.
Image credit: weather.com.ph
Saturday was the Global Day of Parents so today we wanted to give a special shoutout to all those parents who have devoted their lives to improving the lives of their children.
So how about you? Are you a parent? Did your parents inspire you? Do you know a parent who’s an amazing person? Tell us their story!
Most people in Ratanakiri in Cambodia belong to one of nearly 2-dozen ethnic minority groups and speak languages other than Khmer, the national tongue. Education is hard to find in the province. Preschool education is even harder.
Schools are generally poor in Cambodia, and those in Ratanakiri, an impoverished province tucked up against the Vietnam border, are below average.
Plan runs a pre-primary schooling project in Ratanakiri, with 8 preschools having been built. The schools are free to attend and teaching materials and games are provided. Plan also helps to train the teachers. Salaries and running costs are the government’s responsibility, part of a strategy to ensure sustainability.
To Bangladesh now, where we meet Monufa, 16, seen here on the right walking to school with her friends. A little while ago, Monufa’s father decided to marry her off to reduce the costs to the family. Monufa spoke to one of her friends who let the local children’s organisation know what was happening. They visited Monufa’s family and spoke to her parents, who agreed to let Monufa continue her education until she is 18. Monufa is now in Grade 9 and wants to be a nurse when she finishes school.
Plan Bangladesh supports children’s organisations that work with local government, community-based organisations and others in the community to create child marriage-free zones and prevent early marriages.
Yesterday, our friends Hengmeang (left) and Sophoeurn (right) had their say at the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Geneva. The duo were on hand at the Resilient Future We Want high level side event to share their experiences with disasters and their vision for involving children in disaster risk reduction initiatives.
“If you listen to children, the five priorities of the children’s charter will be achieved,” said Sophoeurn.
The charter she is referring to is an action plan for disaster risk reduction that was created for children by children. What are those 5 priorities? Take a look:
1. Schools must be safe and education must not be interrupted.
2. Child protection must be a priority before, during and after a disaster.
3. Children have the right to participate and to access the information they need.
4. Community infrastructure must be safe, and relief and reconstruction must help reduce future risk.
5. Disaster risk reduction must reach the most vulnerable.
Check out Ywastilda, 13, and Nabina, 14, recording a radio programme in Markhu in Makwanpur, Nepal. They’re part of the Kopila child club, 1 of 1,544 such clubs in the country that Plan supports.
Kopila child club has about 120 members aged 6-18. Activities like radio and magazine production are run by the children under the supervision of youth volunteers and Plan staff. The children also learn about news and script writing, child rights, gender, and early marriage.
Now, the members can share what they have learnt with their friends, family and neighbours.
Today is a special day for the people of Timor-Leste. On this day 11 years ago, the half-island nation reached a major milestone in its history, achieving formal independence and taking the first steps on that rocky road we know as freedom.
It’s been an eventful 11 years and there is still so much work to do as we near 2015 and end of the Millennium Development Goals, but there is a great deal to be positive about. Today, we took inspiration from Kirsty Sword Gusmao, the wife of Prime Minister Xanana Gusmao. Mana Kirsty is currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer. We wish her all the best for a speedy recovery.