In celebration of International Youth Day, our Youth Ambassador, Anthony Ford-Shubrook, shares his thoughts on International Youth Day and tells us how you can (and why you should) apply to be a member of our Youth Council…
So, Anthony, what is International Youth Day and why is it so valuable?
Every year, on August 12th, we celebrate International Youth Day. It recognises the importance of young people and celebrates their amazing achievements.
Youth Day presents an opportunity for every country to assess their investment in and commitment to youth. It encourages the exploration of youth issues around the world – getting people to learn about youth culture, activities and education and also getting them involved in the well-being of the next generation of humanity.
Can you tell us about the AbleChildAfrica Youth Council?
The Youth Council will provide an active youth voice on international issues affecting disabled people.
AbleChildAfrica believes that it is important for young people’s voices to be heard and to be included in decisions being made about their future. This will be an opportunity to develop campaigns around these issues which the Youth Council think are essential to the lives of people with disabilities and attempt to influence decision makers at the highest level.
Why should people apply to be involved with AbleChildAfrica?
AbleChildAfrica has worked with disabled young people for more than thirty years. Over the last three decades we have helped thousands of children to be more included in all aspects of their lives. Our work has helped disabled children attend school for the first time, get involved in sports, and receive vital health care. All of this is crucial in giving young disabled children a good start in life.
Don’t take it from me though, have a read of what some of the children we work with say about their experiences:
“I can read and write and play, learn some things. When I grow up I can help my family. I can help my mum and my family. I want to be a lawyer. Because I can get money and give it to my mother and help her get things”
“My favourite thing about school is learning. My favourite subjects are maths, English, Kiswahili and science”.
“I enjoy Little Rock because it has a big field and it’s a beautiful school. I play in the field, I learn, and I eat at lunchtime. I learn to run with a wheelchair – racing. Some people have wheelchairs, not everybody. We play football with the wheelchair, we push the football with the wheelchair.”
“In Little Rock I started coming when I was 5. It has been well with me being in Little Rock. My favourite [subjects are] English, Science and Kiswahili.”
“Before I came to this building we were in a small compound, it was not big enough for us. I was very small. I was not able to talk. So I came to Little Rock [and] then I knew how to feed myself, to write, to read, so I learn many subjects.”
“I want to be a psychologist or a lawyer…Now I can do things on my own. I can cook…I can dress myself. I can arrange the house.”