World Children's Day: For a greener and cleaner future for children

World Children's Day was celebrated at an event held in Hanoi on November 20 by UNICEF Vietnam and the Department of Child Affairs under the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.

Children join the World Children's Day celebration in Hanoi on November 20, 2020. (Photo: UNICEF)
Children join the World Children's Day celebration in Hanoi on November 20, 2020. (Photo: UNICEF)

Every year, World Children's Day (November 20) is the time when the whole world turns to children and conducts activities for policy advocacy and awareness raising on the most pressing issues that children are facing.

About 80 school children and celebrities joined the Hanoi event to raise awareness on this year's theme of “Reimagine a greener and cleaner Vietnam for every child”.

UNICEF Representative in Vietnam Ranna Flower said that World Children's Day 2020 is an opportunity to "recreate" a world that helps children to be safer now as well as in the future, as we have an unprecedented opportunity to adopt solutions that both respond effectively to COVID-19, while also helping to better respond to future crises.

These are truly valuable opportunities for resilience, employment opportunities, and better conditions for schools and health facilities. Hence, World Children's Day 2020 marks a pivotal time to foster a green and sustainable recovery, while recognising the important role children and young people play and highlighting children's solutions for the climate crisis.

Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Nguyen Thi Ha also emphasised that the impacts of climate change have been proven in recent years, having had huge consequences on the well-being and social security of children.

In that context, this year's World Children's Day, with its meaningful theme, emphasises the impacts of climate change and environmental degradation on children, thus encouraging the whole society to take more sustainable and more pervasive actions in protecting the environment, building a green, clean and safe future for all children. Notable is the participation of children themselves in the concrete actions to build their future and to protect their friends and themselves.

In order to protect the environment, harmoniously combine with social security, children's rights, gender equality, and ensure the right of everyone to live in a healthy environment, all the relevant ministries, departments, agencies, organisations and children must raise awareness and join hands to protect the environment, while rebuilding a greener, more sustainable future for children through practical and specific actions, combined with the efficient management and use of resources.

Through a range of advocacy and communication activities, policy makers, businesses and youth and children as environmental advocates would raise public awareness to encourage the community to take small but sustainable action to protect the environment.