Good Hope Foundation for Rural Development under Rwenzori consortium for civic competence (RWECO) joined other child rights organizations to commemorate the day of the African child that is always held on 16th June of every year by member states of the African union (AU) and her partners.
The Rwenzori region celebration were held in Ntoroko District with SAVE THE CHILDREN as the lead organization in partnership with Ntoroko District local government and other child rights NGOs working in the four districts of Rwenzori region. The theme for this years’ commemoration was “Conflict and crisis in Africa: protecting all children’s rights”
The day of African Child (DAC) is a commemoration of the 1976 uprising in Soweto, when a protest by school children in South Africa against the apartheid inspired education resulted in the public killing of these unarmed young protestors by police officials. The DAC further presents an opportunity to take stalk of the efforts of all actors committed to the rights of children on the continent. It provides an occasion for Governments, institutions both local and international and communities to renew their ongoing commitment towards improving the plight of vulnerable children.
The occasion begun with a public dialogue that was held on 15th June as a pre activity towards the Day of African Child. Local Government staff, child and family protection Units of the police force, politicians, RDCs, religious and cultural leaders from the four districts attended the dialogue. Probation officers from the four districts of the Rwenzori region (Kasese, Kabarole,Ntoroko and Bundibugyo) gave presentations about the state of children in their respective districts.
According to presenters, conflicts in the region are caused by land disputes where one tribe/clan feels land belongs them (conservation area VS neighboring communities)
Political difference, most people don’t want to believe that democracy is competition where there must be a winner and a loser.
Domestic violence or conflicts with in the family environment also affect the well being of children.
Cultural superiority of tribes or clans over another in particular areas, some members of certain clans/tribe undermines the cultural practices of other tribes or clans. They refer to them to be back ward people and is responsible for causing confusion in the region.
According to the Ntoroko district probation officer, 287 cases of domestic violence, 57cases of defilement were reported and many more are settled at community level.
The situation is almost the same in all districts with in the Rwenzori region much as other district probation officers could not provide statistics about the situation in their respective districts.
All conflicts both domestic and outside the home environment affect the children negatively.
|Children in in the pavilion during the function at Itojo P/School|
|Children presenting music dance and drama during the commemoration of the Day of Africa child in Ntoroko District at Itojo P/school|
|Representatives of different child rights organizations at the function in Ntoroko|
|The RDC Ntoroko district Mr.Wilson Isingoma giving a speech during the function|