Investment in Children

States need to invest in children to realise their rights as outlined in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and its Optional Protocols.

They need to allocate sufficient resources for children in their budgets and spend these resources well. States are also required to use the budget as a tool to address inequalities among children. They need to maximize domestic resources available to invest in children when necessary within the framework of international cooperation. Children and adults should have meaningful opportunities to participate in budgetary and other fiscal processes and hold states to account based on access to relevant budget and other information.

Despite this insufficient, inequitable and ineffective public resource mobilization, allocation and spending remain one of the biggest barriers to the effective realisation of children’s rights in many countries.

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About the Working Group on Investment in Children

The Working Group on Investment in Children promotes public investment in the realisation of children’s rights through UN human rights treaty bodies and mechanisms, including the Human Rights Council (HRC) and the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, as well as other key institutions.

The Working Group consists of the following members:
African Child Policy Forum, Eurochild, Child Rights Coalition Asia, DCI Costa Rica, IBFAN-GIFA, Redlamyc, Plan International, Save the Children and Terre des Hommes. UNICEF has observer status.

For further information or to become a member of the Working Group please contact the co-convenors:

Agata D’Addato, Eurochild
Email: agata.daddato@eurochild.org

Marcelo Ventos, REDLAMYC
Email: mventos@ipru.edu.uy

 

UNCRC General Comment No. 19 on Public Budgeting for the Realisation of Children’s Rights

In June 2016, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child adopted General Comment No.19 (2016) on Public Budgeting for the Realisation of Children’s Rights (art. 4).

In a statement, the Working Group has welcomed the adoption of the General Comment as a crucial document to assist States to accelerate implementation of all children’s rights as stipulated in the UNCRC and its Optional Protocols. English and Spanish

The Working Group has supported the development of the General Comment in different ways. We have provided input to the drafting of the General Comment and organized regional and expert consultations. Together with the Centre for Children’s Rights at Queen’s University, we have supported close to 2.700 children from 71 countries to provide their own input to the development of the General Comment (also see below how children’s views informed HRC discussions) and provided feedback to these children on their recommendations and how they have been used.

To support implementation of the General Comment, the Working Group has developed the following resources:

On Thursday 22 September 2016, the General Comment were launched in Geneva in an event organized by the Working Group in close collaboration with the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the EU and Uruguay. The event was webcasted.

 

Human Rights Council

In 2015, the HRC annual full-day meeting and resolution on the rights of the child were dedicated to ‘Towards better investment in the rights of the child’.

The HRC resolution on ‘Towards better investment in the rights of the child’ is the first UN resolution on investment in children.

The Working Group supported preparations for the 2015 annual day of discussion in different ways. Several of the speakers selected for the annual day were from the Working Group. During the annual day we also made oral statements on the importance of investment in children, children’s participation and investment in children in Latin America and the Caribbean. The Working Group collaborated to gather the views and recommendations of close to 2.700 children from 71 countries about how governments should spend money to realize children’s rights. This information was shared during the HRC annual day of discussion (see above on how these consultations have informed the development of the General Comment). Based on the consultations with children, the Working Group produced the video ‘Invest in Us’, which was first screened during the HRC annual day of discussion.

The video is also available in Spanish and French

Members of the Working Group made submissions to inform the OHCHR report on ’Towards better investment in the rights of the child‘. The report was produced as a background to the 2015 HRC annul full-day meeting and resolution on the rights of the child and resolution on the theme.

In 2016 and in line with a request in the 2015 resolution, the OHCHR produced a follow-up report on investment in the rights of the child. Members of the Working Group made submissions to inform the content of the report. We organized a round table discussion in March 2016 where the report was launched. During the 31st HRC session, where the follow-up report was tabled, the Working Group made an oral statement welcoming the report.

 

Other international commitments to investment in children

A range of international and regional documents includes commitments to investment in children, including: