Nature Rwanda – Promoting Environmental programming for and with children
Musanze, Rwanda, July 14th, 2022. Nature Rwanda under support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) through Save the Children International (SCI) in Rwanda, is going to implement and a five-year program to establish child-led groups; where children will be inspired and supported to become active participants in creating a suitable environment for their health, education, and development in a fun and relevant way, using “Greenie” as a “vehicle”.
Nature Rwanda will integrate principles and policy guidance on children’s rights to a healthy, safe, and clean environment. This will voice children’s expectations that duty bearers must accelerate ambitious action to ensure a healthy, safe, and clean environment for their future, inspire policymakers to meet the challenges that children have laid down for them, and give children of Rwanda a tool they can use to promote and defend their rights.
It’s their right not a favour: To grow in a Safe, clean and healthy environment.
According to Jean Claude DUSABIMANA, the Executive Director of Nature Rwanda; Children in Rwanda are being more affected by undergoing environmental crisis that undermines their fundamental rights in countless ways through the climate emergency, air pollution, lack of access to safe and sufficient water and the rapid decline of biodiversity. The current standards of living have highlighted that a failure to act to address all aspects of the environmental crisis threatens a wide range of children’s rights including rights to healthy, safe, and clean environment.
Maurice NGIRAMAHORO, Conservation education officer at Dian Fossey Gorillas fund, said that before attending training he was not aware of Child’s right, gender and social inclusion and also disability inclusion but now he can apply explain it to others.
“Our starting point will be to provide room for children’s perspectives and participation in order to engage them and in so doing develop knowledge and create the foundation for action.”, he added.
Being able to build synergies and act through playing a meaningful role in the face of adversity can offer children psychological protection, helping them to feel more in control, more hopeful and more resilient. Moreover, supporting children today to explore these issues, builds a culture of safety and empowers them to be agents of sustainable development.
In the next decades, it will be these children and their own families who will be affected by the decisions made today. By enabling children to become leaders on environmental issues, they will be ready to face these challenges now and in the future.
By Deborah ISHIMWE