The United Nations issued its Declaration on the Rights of the child in 1959 in an attempts to relieve the suffering of children in poor and war-torn countries. It came into force as a convention in 1990 as has been agreed to by 191 countries. Only Solmalia and the USA have not signed.
All the countries who have signed the convention agree to make sure that children aged under 18 have certain basic rights, such as housing and medical care. Recent optional additions include one to make sure that children will not have to serve in military action.
The Conventions on the rights of the Child states that all the children have the right to:
1. A name and nationality
2. Affection , love, understanding and material security
3. Adequate nutrition, housing and medical servides
4. Special care if disabled – physically, mentally or sically
5. Be among the first to receive protection and relief in all circumstances
6. Be protected against all forms of neglect, cruelty and exploitation
7. Full opportunity for play and recreation and equal opportunity to free and compulsory education, to enable the child to develop hi/her individual abilities and to become a useful member of society
8. Develop his/her full potential in conditions of freedom and dignity
9. Be brought up in a spirit of understanding, tolerance, friendship among peoples, peace and universal brotherhood
10. Enjoy these rights regardless of race, colour, sex, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin and property, birth or other status.
INTERNATIONAL YOUTH ORGANIZATIONS
Scouts and Cub Scouts: Sir Robert Baden – Powell (1857-1941) a former general in the British army, launched the scouting movement in 1907. Today there are scouts in almost every country in the world – a total of 28 million. More than six million are in the USA and a half a million in the UK, but the leading scouting country in Indonesia, with almost nine million members. Scouting is forbidden in some countries, including Cuba and North Korea. The Junior division for boys under 11 is called the Cub Scouts (formerly Wolf Cubs in the UK) and was founded in 1930.
Girl Guides/Girl Scouts and Brownies: The Girl Guide Movement was started in 1910 by Sir Robert Baden-Powell and his sister Agnes(1858-1945). Today the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) has 144 member organizations with a total membership of ten million. It is the largest international organization for girls and young women. The junior division, for girls under 11, is called the Brownies.
YMCA and YWCA: The YMCA(Young Men’s Christian Association) was founded by George Williams in the UK in 1844 and in the USA in 1851. Its aim was to provide shelter and other support for young men who came into cities to find work. The organization now has branches in 122 countries. Its sister body, the YWCA (Youg Women’s Christian Association), was founded in the UK in 1855 and in the USA in 1858.