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Fight against child labour: ethical consumerism

POSTED June 12, 2023

Fight against child labour: ethical consumerism

Child labour continues to be a significant issue in many parts of the world, and thus, it remains relevant today.

By Simran Bhatia, digital content services manager, Canada 

child sitting at a desk, with a pen in her hand

The International Labour Organization (ILO) launched the first World Day Against Child Labour in 2002 as a way to highlight the plight of children engaged in child labour. Observed on June 12th, the day is intended to serve as a catalyst for the growing worldwide movement against child labour.

Emphasizing the link between social justice and child labour, the slogan for the World Day in 2023 is ‘Social Justice for All. End Child Labour!’. This theme emphasizes the importance of social justice in addressing the issue of child labor and highlights the need to take collective action to eradicate child labor globally. By focusing on social justice, the theme highlights the fundamental rights of children, including access to education, healthcare, and a safe environment. It calls for the elimination of all forms of child labor and the creation of fair and inclusive societies where children are protected from exploitation and can fully realize their potential.

Child labour refers to the exploitation of children through any form of work that deprives them of their childhood, interferes with their ability to attend regular schools, and is mentally, physically, socially, or morally harmful. It is a violation of children’s rights and has detrimental effects on their health, education, and overall development.

The World Day Against Child Labour aims to draw attention to the millions of children around the world who are engaged in hazardous work, depriving them of their right to education and a healthy childhood. It seeks to raise awareness about the importance of protecting children from economic exploitation, providing them with access to quality education, and creating opportunities for their future.

Is Child Labour Still Relevant?

Child labour continues to be a significant issue in many parts of the world, and thus, it remains relevant today. Despite efforts made to combat child labour, millions of children are still engaged in hazardous and exploitative work, which deprives them of their rights, compromises their well-being, and hinders their overall development.

Several factors contribute to the persistence of child labor, including poverty, lack of access to education, inadequate enforcement of labor laws, discrimination, and social norms. In certain industries and sectors, such as agriculture, mining, manufacturing, and domestic work, child labor is particularly prevalent.

How your support helps in ending child labour?

  • Supporting organizations working on the ground: reputable organizations and NGOs actively work to combat child labor. These organizations often operate programs and initiatives focused on rescuing and rehabilitating child laborers, providing education and vocational training, creating awareness campaigns, and advocating for policy changes.
  • Providing education and vocational training: Access to quality education is vital in preventing child labor. Children Believe supports initiatives that provide educational opportunities to vulnerable children, including those who have been involved in child labor. By funding schools, scholarships, and educational programs, donations can help remove barriers to education, improve school infrastructure, train teachers, and provide learning materials. Vocational training programs can also be supported to equip older children and young adults with the skills needed for sustainable employment and income generation, reducing the likelihood of them turning to exploitative labor.
  • Addressing the root causes of child labour, such as poverty and lack of social protection. For example, donations can support poverty alleviation programs that provide financial assistance, microcredit loans, and livelihood support to families living in vulnerable conditions.
  • Awareness campaigns and advocacy: can be used to fund awareness campaigns and advocacy initiatives aimed at raising public awareness about child labor and advocating for policy changes. These campaigns can educate communities, governments, and businesses about the consequences of child labor, promote responsible consumerism, and mobilize support for legislative measures to protect children’s rights. Donations enable organizations to reach a wider audience, conduct research, create impactful media campaigns, and engage in lobbying efforts to bring about systemic changes.
  • Rehabilitation and support for survivors can be directed towards supporting rehabilitation and reintegration programs for children who have been rescued from child labor situations.

While progress has been made in reducing child labor over the years, the persistence of this issue reminds us of the ongoing need to prioritize its elimination. By working together and taking collective action, we can make a difference and create a world where every child can grow and thrive in a safe, healthy, and nurturing environment.

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Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60+ years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.

About ChildFund Alliance:

A member of ChildFund Alliance, Children Believe is part of a global network of child-focused development organizations working to create opportunities for children and youth, their families and communities. ChildFund helps nearly 23-million children and their families in 70 countries overcome poverty and underlying conditions that prevent children from achieving their full potential. We work to end violence against children; provide expertise in emergencies and disasters to ease the harmful impact on children and their communities; and engage children and youth to create lasting change and elevate their voices in decisions that affect their lives.

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