Ethiopia: Thinking of children is the first step of thinking of development

CAC members while acting

Advocacy Action of the Children Advisory Committee (CAC) in Tachabi Kebele (Sinan district)

Situation analysis with the “problem tree”

For the children in Tachabi Kebele, Child Labour was the most prioritized issue affecting them. In their points of view, the problem is caused by parents who consider children as a source of income. The children understand that this is mainly caused by the lack of basic needs, like food. As families often have a lot of children, there can be a lack of food for all family members. By the means of the child participatory method “The problem tree” the CAC members analyzed that the underlying causes for this problems is the lack of income of the parents, and also a lack of family planning. For them, poverty and iliteracy are the underlying root causes for the problem of child labour.

Refining the Plan for the Advocacy Action

Based on the situation analysis the CAC decided, that stopping Child Labour would be the goal of der Advocacy Action. Within their group, they looked at strenghts (e.g. “Their ability and experience to write poems and show drama which helps to influence people easily”) and possible obstacles (e.g. “Shortage of time since the children are students, parents need their labour and they need to attend  school”). As priority targets the children chose their parents as well as schools. Furthermore at the same time they want to adress the whole communities and friends.

Childrens key message´s:

  • “If children are exploited, there won´t be a generation who can handover the nation.”
  • “We, the CAC members, kindly request that every community member should stop child labour.”
  • “Let’s send the children to school and create educated citizen in the nation.”
  • “Thinking of the children is the first step of thinking of development.”

Group of CAC members

Different steps during the Advocacy Action

  1. Conduct discussion with parents on the rights of children
  2. Conduct awareness raising on the rights of children for the communities through drama, poems and through inviting guests who have deep knowledge and experience on child labour
  3. Discussion with teachers on children’s right at schools
  4. Consulting friends to discusstheir roles in avoiding child labour
  5. Report cases which are related with violation of children´s right to the stakeholders

Success of the Advocacy Action

The Children reported about the positive outcome of the Advocacy Action. It was helpful for them, practicing how to organize an event and advocate with a lot of people.  Through this experience their level of self-confidence enhanced. The CAC members were able to increase the awareness of the communities on child right protection. They understood that the community should take the lion share in protecting children’s right at different level.

They could see direct changes as they supported 11 children getting educational materials to start their school and Tachi Chabi  primary school readjusted the water supply time based on the demands of the CAC . Furthermore the audience of the Advocacy Action commits to enhance the participation of children and to continue in the other villages and reputedly to aware the community.