Platform for Youth and Community Development Trust joins Africa and the rest of the world to commemorate the day of the African child. The day is celebrated annually on the 16th of June to take stock of the work being done to promote children and young people. The theme for the commemorations in 2022 is Eliminating Harmful Practices Affecting Children: Progress on Policy and Practice since 2013.
PYCD would like to take this opportunity to highlight some of the activities and programmes that the organisation is doing to eliminate harmful cultural practices that affect children and young people from realising their dreams.
The organisation will hold a series of activities starting from the 16th of June 2022 to the 30th of June 2022. The activities will start with a Press conference that will be issued by the organisation to the media from the PYCD Centre at Checheche Growth Point, Chipinge.
PYCD will use this press conference to announce its plan of action to promote the rights of children and young people. The activities will include a clean-up campaign which will culminate in speeches from different stakeholders involving in children and young people programming.
As an organisation, PYCD is cognisant of the fact that for the past decade, governments in Africa have made efforts to eliminate all forms of harmful cultural and social practices hindering children from realising their full potential. Whilst some of the activities fit the category of progress, we take note that most of these have been for tokenism with young people still among the vulnerable and poorest in the world.
Africa has been a repository of experimental policies that have made it difficult to contain young people at home and in schools. There is overwhelming evidence of failure at all levels of society (parents, families, communities and leaders) to eliminate harmful cultural practices affecting children. The most prevalent harmful cultural practices on the spotlight are early marriages, child prostitution, child sexual abuse and child trafficking for purposes of forced labour and prostitution.
PYCD is committed to working closely with other civic society organisations and government to implement the aspirations of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Children (UNCRC), African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACRWC) and the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
PYCD has benefitted from the existence of 250 Peer Educators in Chipinge district who are working closely with aunts and uncles to bridge the generational gap that has been responsible for the abuse of children and Young people.
As part of our recommendations, we call on the government to:
- Quickly operationalise the recent Constitutional Court ruling on the age of consent
- Harmonise child related laws
Source: Platform for Youth & Community Development (PYCD)