Plan Ireland and partners collaborate for change

pictured: David Dalton, Plan Ireland CEO (centre) joined by colleagues representing Childfund, WorldVision, Unicef, National Youth Council and the Children’s Rights Alliance. 

18th June, 2015. The Coalition for Children’s Rights will today join forces with the National Youth Council of Ireland and Children’s Rights Alliance to hold a conference and discuss the impact the Sustainable Development Goals will have on children in Ireland and internationally. The Coalition for Children’s Rights, made up of Childfund Ireland, Plan Ireland, UNICEF Ireland and World Vision Ireland, is an entity that advocates for the prioritisation of children’s rights in Irish policy.

This event, entitled Making Rights a Reality, aims to raise awareness of the fact that these international goals will be universal and will bring together domestic and international organisations to examine what this will mean for the lives of children and youth around the world.

Speaking at the event, David Dalton, CEO of Plan Ireland and Chair of the Coalition for Children’s Rights said

“today we will be looking at how the SDGs will enable national and international organisations to put child rights at the centre of our joint development efforts.”

“Today’s conference is about creating a community of children’s rights activists in Ireland and setting on a collaborative journey. Together we need to establish an authoritative voice so that we can represent the children that remain invisible, in Ireland and overseas. The Sustainable Development Goals provide us with a powerful tool to this.” said Mr. Dalton

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the new set of development goals that will address global poverty, inequality and climate change over the next 15 years, replacing the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). After months of negotiations among UN member states, the first official ‘zero’ draft of sustainable  development goals (SDGs) was published last week.

“The Millennium Development Goals were in many ways successful. Progress has been made. A smaller proportion of the world’s population now live in extreme poverty than 15 years ago. Child mortality rates have decreased substantially and we have seen important advances in health and education. However, more than 400 million children still live in extreme poverty so we still have a lot more to do to bring this to zero.” said Helen Keogh, Chief Executive of World Vision Ireland.

Keynote speaker at today’s conference, Tanya Ward, Chief Executive of Children’s Rights Alliance commented, “The Sustainable Development Goals really connect with areas where we are failing to uphold children’s rights in Ireland. The Goals focus on areas such as poverty, inequality and the harmful use of alcohol – critical areas of concern. The Children’s Rights Alliance will push the Government to deliver on these new commitments and make children’s rights a reality.”

Making Rights a Reality takes place at the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin Castle from 9am until 1pm.