Students at Hadew primary school in Jijiga, Ethiopia. Photo: UNICEF/UN043870/Lister
United Nations Universal Children’s Day was established in 1954 and is celebrated on November 20th each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children's welfare.
November 20th is an important date as it is the date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. It is also the date in 1989 when the UN General assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Since 1990, Universal Children's Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the declaration and the convention on children's rights.
Mothers and fathers, teachers, nurses and doctors, government leaders and civil society activists, religious and community elders, corporate moguls and media professionals as well as young people and children themselves can play an important part in making Universal Children's Day relevant for their societies, communities and nations.
Universal Children's Day offers each of us an inspirational entry-point to advocate, promote and celebrate children's rights, translating into dialogues and actions that will build a better world for Children.
2017: It’s a #KidsTakeOver
To celebrate this year's Universal Children’s Day, UNICEF has invited children from around the world taking over key roles in media, politics, business, sport and entertainment to voice their support for millions of their peers who are unschooled, unprotected and uprooted on 20th November.
“From Auckland to Amman and from New York to N’Djamena, we want children to campaign in their schools and communities to help save children’s lives, fight for their rights and fulfil their potential,” said Justin Forsyth UNICEF Deputy Executive Director. “World Children’s Day will be a day for children, by children.”
It’s a fun day, with a serious message:
- Iconic Children’s Takeovers of roles in Politics, Media, Entertainment, Music, Sports and Business
- School Activations
- Global Survey of over 10,000 children on issues that matter most to them
- Les Mills Move the World Gyms Activation
- Music Video by Kids United
- UN HQ Children’s Takeover with UN-SG
- And much more!
And to help give a voice to the millions of children whose voices remain unheard, high profile stars and world leaders are lending their support to the initiative, including:
- UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham will quiz children about their views of the world in a short film to be released for World Children’s Day.
- French music group Kids United will release an empowering new music video recorded for UNICEF and World Children’s Day.
- Global takeovers of government, sport and business, including legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, Spanish footballer and New York City FC captain David Villa, South Korean actor and national ambassador Ahn Sung-ki, and Lego Foundation and Qantas.
- Logan actress Dafne Keen and Isabela Moner from 'Transformers: The Last Knight' and Nickelodeon will join 150 children to take over United Nations Headquarters where singers, songwriters and musicians Chloe x Halle will debut a specially penned track to mark the day.