Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi, 13 December 2016: Hon’ble President Pranab Mukherjee today flagged off the ‘100 million for 100 million’ campaign – a global initiative of 2014 Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi – that will support 100 million youth to stand up and be the voice of the voiceless 100 million children and youth across the world, within the next five years. In other words, 100 million youth representing one generation will come together to address the problems of the upcoming generation.
The launch was held on the second day of the two-day inaugural ‘Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit 2016’ at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi today. Along with Nobel Laureates and Leaders, the flag off by the Hon’ble President assumed special significance since 11 December is also the birthday of Shri Mukherjee. He was greeted warmly by all the participants.
Speaking about the campaign imperatives, Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi said: “Starting today, let us build the legacy we want to leave behind. I see a world where every child is free, safe and educated… where justice guides the rule of law, where governments and inter-governmental agencies create holistic policies for the wellbeing of children. I see a world where science and technology play a pivotal role in creating systems that deter crime – where via economic arguments we make children the beneficiaries of growth and not slaves of it. I see a world where young people drive change.”
The campaign launch culminated the two-day ‘Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit 2016’ that brought together around 25 Laureates and Leaders, youth and more than 150 eminent personalities from diverse walks of life – academia, business, civil society, sports, arts and culture. The Summit was convened to harness the moral and political authority of the Laureates and Leaders to promote children’s rights to freedom and education by eliminating child trafficking, child labour, slavery and other forms of violence against children.
Champion for the rights of children, Kailash Satyarthi said at the launch, “Change is knocking on our doors, riding on the enthusiasm and idealism of the youth. We must see them – and they must see themselves – as part of the solutions.”
The ‘100 million’ campaign will use the power of youth and harness it to empower and support 100 million children who are denied basic rights to freedom, education and healthcare. It will be a partnership between universities, youth student organisations and teachers’ associations to promote values of global citizenship amongst the youth. The aim is to primarily use social media for sensitising people, building awareness about children’s causes, petitioning stakeholders, compelling governments, the international community and corporates to ascertain that no child labour, child slave or trafficked youth are involved in their supply and production chains.
Leaders who participated in the Summit included: HSH Princess Charlene of Monaco; HRH Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein of Jordan; HRH Princess Laurentien of The Netherlands; HE Lorena Castillo de Varela, First Lady of Panama and UNAIDS Special Ambassador for AIDS in Latin America; former Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard; OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría; Ms Kerry Kennedy, President, Robert F Kennedy Human Rights; Mr Jeffrey Sachs, Director of Center for Sustainable Development, Earth Institute; and Mr Noriyuki Suzuki, General Secretary, ITUC Asia Pacific, among others.
Some of the Nobel Laureates included His Holiness Dalai Lama, HE José Ramos-Horta, former President of Timor-Leste; Mdm Leymah Gbowee and Mdm Tawakkol Karman. Nobel Prize-winning organizations included International Labour Organization (represented by HE Mr Gilbert Houngbo), International Committee of the Red Cross (represented by Dr Helen Durham), Médecins Sans Frontières (represented by Dr Unni Krishnan Karunakara) and Grameen Bank (represented by Mr Ratan Kumar Nag).
The Hon’ble President and various dignitaries lauded Mr Kailash Satyarthi and his Foundation for the initiative to bring them together for the common cause of children’s welfare across the globe.
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