BC’s Child Rights Public Awareness Campaign
My child’s rights
How does teaching my child about their rights help them?
As a parent, you know your child best and are the best person to make sure your child has everything they need to survive and thrive in Canada.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is an international agreement that Canada and most countries in the world have
signed. It lays out what every person under the age of 18 needs to thrive and live a healthy life.
In Canada each and every child and young person under 18, including immigrant youth, is entitled to protection under the UNCRC.
At least four of these articles specifically reference immigrant and newcomer youth:
Article 2: All children and youth can enjoy their rights, whatever their race, religion, abilities, whatever they think or say, without being discriminated against.
Article 14: Youth have the right to think and believe what they want and to practice whatever religion they choose.
Article 22: Governments must make sure that refugee youth have the same rights as children born in that country.
Article 30: Children and youth have the right to learn and use the language and customs of their families.
Teaching kids about their rights (and responsibilities) increases a child’s self-esteem, level of engagement at home and school, and an increase in respect for others. When kids understand their rights they are less likely to be bullied and to stand up for others. It makes them good citizens of Canada and of the world.
Here are some organizations and resources that might be helpful to you
Settlement Workers in Schools (SWIS)
SWIS is an outreach program for new immigrant students and their families in elementary and secondary schools, promoting understanding of Canadian culture.
My Tween and Me, Nobody’s Perfect, and Parent-Child Mother Goose Programs
Parenting can be hard. These courses are put on by BC Council for Families are free, there is free childcare, you get to meet other parents who are experiencing similar challenges that you are, and nobody will judge you or think you are a bad parent. There are many classes available in French in communities all over BC.
Immigration Services Society (ISS) of BC
ISSofBC provides a variety of services to immigrant and refugee communities in the Lower Mainland, and works with over 23,000 clients per year. ISSofBC plays an important role in the settlement, education, and integration of immigrants from the day they arrive in Canada.
While the UNCRC guarantees a youth’s right to express their views it does not mean that children and youth are the boss.
Child and youth rights are there to encourage all adults to listen to the opinions of children and involve them in decision-making with the hope that children will learn what it means to make responsible decisions. You know best how much responsibility your kids can take on. It’s up to you to help them realize their potential.
5 simple ways to support your child’s rights at home:
- Help children to understand the rights of children in other parts of the world
- Involve your children in family decision making
- Invite your child’s friend over for dinner
- Support your child’s interests and strengths
- Volunteer with your child for a cause they believe in
Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies (AMSSA)
BC Centre for Safe Schools and Communities (BCCSSC)
United Nations Association of BC (UNA)
Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISS of BC)
Ministry of Child and Family Development (MCFD)
Multilingual Orientation Service Association for Immigrant Communities (MOSAIC)
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