AMMAN, March 26, 2018— Under the patronage of His Majesty King Abdullah II, and co-hosted by HRH Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, the second Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit 2018 takes place in Jordan on March 26, 2018 at the King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Centre in the Dead Sea. Inspired and founded by Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi, Laureates and Leaders for Children is a growing movement bringing together Nobel Laureates, global leaders, and youth from around the world to inspire, collaborate and act to protect the most vulnerable children. Youth from India namely Amarlal,MananAnsari,Shubham and Khusboo were present at the conference. They have been rescued by Bachpan Bachao Andolan and are former Child Laborers except Khushboo.
Shubham, who was a former Child Labourer,and is currently an engineer said, “I have struggled throughout my life, as a child I struggled when I fought for my daily bread, for my survival. Today, I struggle against the exploitation of children and fight for their rights. Yes the flight to Jordan, my first ever time on a plane, was very comfortable and peaceful. But as soon as the thoughts of children struggling around the world came to mind, even the comfort of Emirates could not bring me relief. I have not found peace yet”.
KailashSatyarthi Children’s Foundation has brought together 200 Youth from different parts of the world mainly Pakistan,Palestine,Sweden etc. The event will also witness Mohammed Al Junde who is the International Peace Prize winner (2017 ),a Syrian refugee and is now in Sweden and Khibaet Salazar who is the National Youth Coordinator of the 100 Million Campaign in Peru . Khibaet Salazar says, “Children are being abused by family members and facing violence at schools. They are migrating to other countries unprotected and facing child labour, sexual exploitation and other forms of violence along the way.I am happy to be part of the summit which values the young generation”
“Today, conflict, violence, climate change and poverty are forcing millions of children on the move” HRH Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein commented. “Millions are losing their homes and families, being trafficked and enslaved, missing out on formal education, and being subjected to routine physical and emotional abuse. This summit is a sincere and concerted effort to bring people together to openly discuss these challenges and formulate long-term and realistic strategies to address them.”
“As a Head of State and leader, I feel especially committed to guaranteeing every child in my country has access to fair opportunities and an environment which is free of any exploitation, abuse, violence and discrimination, “ adds the President of Panama H.E Juan Carlos Varela Rodríguez.
Laureates and Leaders for Children aims to harness the intellectual, moral and political will of the world’s leaders to protect and educate every child, especially the more than 263 million children and youth who are not in school, the 152 million children toiling in labour, and 12 million children who make up half of the world’s refugees and asylum seekers. These are not mere numbers but, rather, each figure represents a childhood lost, another child traumatised, and another child more vulnerable to exploitation making it the greatest crisis humanity will ever face.
“I dream of a world where no child needs a passport or a visa. If technology, knowledge and wealth can flow freely across borders without seeking refuge, why can’t our children? I dream of a world where every border, treasury and heart is open for every child. I dream of a world where childhood does not remain a matter of charity, but the essence of childhood – simplicity purity and forgiveness – become driving forces of everyday life”, said Nobel Laureate KailashSatyarthi.
The first Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit, held in 2016, was hosted by the President of India, Honourable Mr. Pranab Mukherjee. Twenty one Nobel Laureates and world leaders joined 400 distinguished thinkers and influencers from academia, business, entertainment, government and civil society, all committed to work together to prioritize the world’s children in their spheres of influence.
After participating in the first summit in India, Secretary General Angel Gurria shared that OECD is incorporating the well-being of children into its measures and indicators of inclusive growth and at the G20 Summit 2017 called for the world’s governments to support Laureates and Leaders for Children, reiterating the need for urgent action to end slavery and ensure all children are educated.
Laureates and Leaders for Children is convened by His Excellency Jose Ramos Horta, Nobel Peace Laureate and Former President of Timor Leste and led by a steering committee including HRH Prince Ali bin Hussein of Jordan; Her Excellency the First Lady of Panama, Mrs. Lorena Castillo de Varela; Nobel Peace Laureate, Mr. KailashSatyarthi; Human Rights Activist and President of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Ms. Kerry Kennedy; and renowned economist Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General on the Sustainable Development Goals.