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Viet Child Delegation to UNGASS on Children Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Ha Thi Lan Anh, Canada May 15, 2002
Human Rights   Opinions


The 6 Vietnam Child Delegates to the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children ( UNGASS) and the Children’s Forum has just returned home from New York with the outcomes,inspirations and several messages from the conference.

The Children’s Forum , a meeting venue for 350 official child delegates(under18) to the 27th UNGASS from over 132 countries and 1400 Ngos , ran from Sunday May5 to May 8.The young delegates drafted a joint response to the Special Session’s outcome document which contains goals toward development of children and follow-up actions over the next decade.Two child delegates,13 year old Gabriela Arieta from Bolivia and 17 year old Audrey Cheynut from Monaco, were chosen by their peers to present the statement to the UNGASS on May 8.

“ I am very happy to be at the Children’s Forum because together with children from around the world, I am helping to shape a historic event : This is the first time children can address to the UNGASS on issues that effect their lives.”, said Nguyen Manh Dung, 15 year old delegate from Phu Tho Province.

The 27th UNGASS on children ,which ran from 8May to 10 May, gathers representatives from 1400 NGOS, over 70 heads of state and 370 children to review achievements in implementation and results of the World Declaration and Plan of Action of the World Summit 1990 and renew commitments and consider future action for children.

Nguyen Chau Thuy Trang,17,a street child from PhotoVoice project in Ho Chi Minh city thinks that the conference was very inspiring. She says it is a life- time experience for her to get together with children and adults from around the world to discuss about issues such as poverty, violence and exploitation.

For Ha Thi Lan Anh ,a 17 year old Hanoi girl, the best impression of the conference is that she was elected to represent Asian children to talk face-to-face with heads of Asian states at the Intergenerational Dialogue where she addressed on youth participation and partnership with governments in implementing the follow-up actions.

Apart from the official UN General Assembly sessions, the Vietnamese child delegates attended several side events. Lan Anh participated in Young Journalists Workshop where her contributions were printed on the official NGOs’ daily newspaper of the conference. The Vietnamese children were interviewed as well by several media including BBC World News, Plan International Newsletter, and Unicef film.

Also in New York,Thuy Trang and Hoang Duc presented and talked at the exhibit and opening panel discussion of “An exhibition of Hope and Determination”. The exhibitions show photos taken by street children in Vietnam and Bhutanese child refugees.On the panel of the exhibtions, besides Thuy Trang and Hoang Duc,were speakers such as Dr. Nafis Sadik Special adviser to UN secretary, Olara Otunnu, UN special representative on Children and Armed Conflict and the Bhutanese youth refugee.



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