Submitting children demands to the party offices
KCRO and CACL-Karnataka chapter have done an advocacy campaigns during several elections of all levels (Garamapanchayat, ward sabhas , M.L.A, M.P elections), to sensitize and influence political parties, on the one hand, to include adherence to child rights in their manifestos and speeches, with specific mention of, and commitment to, the most serious issues in the state.On the other hand, we are in a process to sensitize the electorate to include children’s key issues in their demands and to judge how the candidates spontaneously refer or react to them.
The campaigns have succeeded in convincing several political parties and candidates and also voters to stand for child rights and vote for child rights. The feedback we have received are quite encouraging and demanding, as the issue in this nature is something new to the political parties as well as candidates.
In an effort to promote child participation, Children’s Parliament was started by KCRO, the output and follow-up of the initiative was more effective. Consultations for children to speak out freely on various issues concerning them. Children’s Parliament will be held at various districts; in some, candidates also participated and had discussions with the children. This resulted in various political parties giving promises to children in the areas of child health, education and protection. (These children’s parliaments are not mock sessions of the real parliaments, but sessions for children to speak out freely on various issues concerning to them).
From 2007 – 2011, children’s parliaments were held in 27 districts of Karnataka to bring together children for a debate on the situation and priorities of children. People’s representatives from the selected districts will be invited to interact with children. The response and expectations of children will be compiled together to be taken to the people’s representatives at state level.
The demands made by children were circulated to KCRO partners in every district who used it to advocate with representatives standing for local elections. (Pre-election advocacy)
In continuation to the above district level children’s parliament, kcro for the first time in karnataka’s history conducted children’s parliament at vidhana soudha on the occasion of children’s day (14th-15th nov 2012). Mr.sadananda gowda, honorable chief minster spent time with children in which the following were the highlights of the meeting:
- Child representatives from thirty districts congregated and raised their issues and concerns in the presence of key people’s representatives and legislative Forum for Child Rights.
- Child participation and expression were encouraged.
- Chief Minister and legislators were sensitized about the problems faced by their respective constituencies as well as State’s children.