A group of 35 children took over the iconic National Stock Exchange on Children’s Day to voice their support for protecting the rights of the world’s most vulnerable children. These children from leading NGO’s such as NineisMine and Ashramshalas along with renowned business leaders comprising of Kumar Anurag Pratap, CSR Leader, Capgemini Technology Services India Limited and Mr. Vikram Limaye, MD and CEO, National Stock Exchange introspected and shared ideas on how businesses can ensure protection and promotion of children’s rights through an interesting panel discussion.
The highlight of the event was the children ringing the closing bell in the presence of the dignitaries. The children also presented interpretations of Child Rights and Sustainable Development Goals and what they mean for children.
World Children’s Day represents the date when the most ratified treaty in the world, the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child came into being. On this occasion, UNICEF is working globally with its partners, media, parliamentarians, businesses, This Children’s Day, UNICEF is inviting children around the world to take the centre stage in a week-long activity to help save children’s lives, fight for their rights and help them fulfil their potential. From November 14 to 20, there will be a #KidsTakeOver where children will ‘take over’ high-visibility roles in media, politics, business, sport, and entertainment to shine a spotlight on the most pressing challenges faced by their generation. This is a day for children, by children, all over the world.
Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Henriette Ahrens, Deputy Representative – Programmes, UNICEF India said, ‘’ One very important right for children is their right to participate. We believe that children are not only the future but also a big part of the change we need to bring. They are the most influential change agents. As UNICEF Children and issues concerning them are a cornerstone of everything we do.”
“For us this occasion is symbolic to ensuring each and every child in included and his or her right fulfilled by engaging in dialogue with influencers which in this case is businesses. We are very proud to collaborate with NSE due to their convening power of businesses and the wonderful work they have been doing as part of their CSR programmes, ” she added.
In India, there has been a lot of development over the past few years in the private sector and the role it plays in India’s development story with children being at the core of it. The corporate sector has an impact on every aspect of society and has huge potential to be a positive force that reinforces the equity agenda, especially for children. Business makes important contributions to the well-being of children by creating jobs and livelihoods for families. Therefore, the private sector can play a significant role in ensuring that every child in India has a fair start in life.
Mr. Vikram Limaye, MD and CEO, National Stock Exchange shared, ‘’ NSE is proud to facilitate the first of #KidsTakeOver in the world in association with UNICEF. UNICEF is celebrating the anniversary of UN convention of the Rights of the Child with kids taking over parliament, events, media, and businesses all around the world. Children will take over NSE by ringing the closing bell on November 14 which is usually rung by dignitaries and business leaders and will discuss issues of importance to them with business leaders”.
While the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child states that it is the duty of the Government to respect rights of children, businesses must do so as well. Studies clearly indicate the impact of investment in development on GDP. Since nutrition levels in children are linked to their cognitive abilities as well as their overall well-being, this reduces expenditure in health. Businesses also have an important role to play in empowering and enabling children by engaging them through various means.