Climate change and its impact on children’s rights and climate change financing for the global south are extensively covered in this edition of Green Governance’s newsletter. Read on to get more on this.
Child rights violations in the face of climate change
Twelve-year-old Tendai* sells fruits and vegetables at a common market in Chimanimani Rural District, in eastern Zimbabwe. This is not the choice of profession she had envisaged for herself at this tender age. While most children her age are acquiring from education through learning at school, Tendai is receiving informal socialization to life, with frequent encounters of brutal or vulgar exchanges with disrespectful customers. As a breadwinner herself following the death of her parents, she has three younger siblings who food and school fees.
Children in Chimanimani are being over-worked by circumstances, others have ventured into artisanal gold mining just to support their siblings therefore abandoning school. In some instances, children also engage into transactional sex or prostitution in a bid to generate income for survival. It is without doubt that the manner in which children affected by Cyclone Idai are taking responsibility and the burden of care of traumatic, emotionally and physically challenging.
Climate change has been demonstrated to have both a direct and indirect impact on a wide range of human rights, including the rights of the child. The effects of climate change are mostly felt by children, and other key populations which are more vulnerable. Furthermore, it has been noted that if there is no significant reduction in emissions over the next decade, by 2050 there will be major climatic changes that will complicate human socio-economic activity.
On a daily basis, the effects of climate change are increasingly doubling their impact on children’s fundamental rights to survival and development. These are enshrined in the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Children (UNCRC) Article 24 which is right to healthcare, Article 27; the right to a standard of living, Article 28 and 29; on the right to education, Article 31; the right to rest, play recreation and leisure. In the wake of climate change, the rights of children are violated including the right of freedom from abuse and exploitation.
Read the full newsletter here (792KB PDF)
Source: Green Governance Zimbabwe Trust