Ha Noi, 4/3/3016
Worldwide Campaign for Education for Children with Disabilities
Two hundred thousand primary school pupils in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America will take part in the annual international event ‘We Ring the Bell’ on 10 March. This campaign is meant to draw attention to the right to education of children with disabilities. Many of these children are currently unable or not allowed to go to school. The NLR Mekong and its partner organizations will also ‘ring the bell’ on 10 March, 2016.
On that day, everywhere around the world, school children with and without disabilities will make noise for one minute in the schoolyards, using drums, horns and all other kinds of instruments. In this way they want to draw the attention of policymakers and other people who have the power to remove the barriers that prevent children with disabilities to attend school.
More than 70 schools and 20,000 children in Africa, Asia and Latin America will join in the event. And 720 schools and 180,000 children in the Netherlands will do the same. 'We Ring the Bell' is a Dutch Liliane Foundation initiative in partnership with NLR Mekong. Together with the Liliane Foundation, partner organizations support children with disabilities, also through education. But much more is needed in our country and in the rest of the world. Schools need to become more accessible to children with disabilities, literally and figuratively. Teachers and teaching materials should meet the needs of these children. And everyone needs to become aware that education is a fundamental right of every child, and therefore also of every child with disabilities.
In the year 2000, some 200 member states of the United Nations agreed on eight Millennium Targets. One of these targets was: primary education for every child by 2015. This Millennium Target has not been achieved.
Across the world, more and more children go to school (89%), but this is not the case for children with disabilities. In low- and middle-income countries, a mere 10% of them go to school. In our country, their participation in education is equally low.
'We Ring the Bell' is an annual campaign. Now, in 2016, its message needs to be heard more than ever. On 25 September 2015, the United Nations formulated a number of Sustainable Development Goals. These are world targets that will replace the Millennium Targets as of 2016. These new targets are meant to focus on those who did not benefit from the Millennium Targets, particularly children (and adults) with disabilities. Their situation has improved only very slightly since the year 2000. It is now high time to change this. And the louder the call across the world, the more people will hear it.
For more information about 'We Ring the Bell' and/or photos or video material, please contact:
No. 6, Alley 26, Kim Hoa Street, Hanoi - Vietnam
IPO Box 165 - Hanoi - Vietnam
Tel: +84-4 35 741 493
Fax: +84-4 35 741 492