Francia - KidsRights
“A name and a nationality are indispensable and a basic right for every child”
Name

Francia

Country of origin
Dominican Republic
Current country
Dominican Republic
Age
24
Theme:
Francia won the International Children’s Peace Prize in 2010. She was born on the 13th of September in 1994 and lives in the Dominican Republic. She is committed to the right of children to a name and a nationality, and has helped hundreds of children obtain a birth certificate.

My name is Francia, I come from a small Dominican village where there are many Haitians. They, like my mother, have fled their native country. Many of the them have no official papers and because of that, they have no access to the same rights as Dominicans.   

Although I was born in the Dominican Republic, I had no birth certificate, which meant I could not enrol in high school. My mother, as Haitian refugee, couldn’t do get one for me. My father could, as a  Dominican resident,  but he had left us when I was 9 years old. Fortunately, I had a Dominican aunt, who took care of the necessary steps. Thanks to her, I received a birth certificate and could go back to school.   

The initiative 
At school, I learned that every child has the right to a name, surname and nationality. So I decided to act in order to make sure that other refugee children would also get their birth certificate, so that they could go to school and receive adequate health care. I knocked on doors in my village to tell children about their right to a birth certificate and that if they didn’t have one yet, I could help them get one. 

Together we move the world 
Kidsrights supports me, as a change maker, in my fight for the right of a child to a name and nationality. Currently, I am studying at university and earning money at a job I like. Since I want all children to have the opportunities that I have now, I will keep on helping them, regardless of where they are.

My mission 
Every human being has the right to happiness, which is  why I decided to act. After all, if something has to be done and you have the knowledge and the power to do so, then there is no reason why you shouldn't. I will most definitely continue as a changemaker, but what about you? 

Highlights

Disabilities
Aznova's Inclusion Workshops
What is the problem? Barguna in Bangladesh, where Aznova is from, is a cyclone prone area and thus vulnerable to natural disasters. It does not offer inclusive disaster risk reduction initiatives for disabled people, who are much more at risk when disasters occur. Also, the education system is not inclusive and disabled children are left behind. People view disabled children as a burden of the family or community in general and as a result, disabled children have no proper access to services. What is Aznova’s solution? Aznova wants to provide disabled children with quality education and disaster risk reduction measures as well. She wants to raise awareness and change the public opinion on these two issues. She plans on doing this through a number of workshops and counselling sessions. The participants of these workshops would be the disabled children, their parents, the community’s youth, local journalists and members of the local government. During the workshop, she wants to empower disabled children to become role models in the community to show that every child has power and rights. Aznova wants children within her region to get organized as leaders and mobilize the community in favour of disabled children. Also, Aznova plans on having information sessions with disabled children and their parents to educate them that disability should not be seen as a burden on the family. What is Aznova’s goal? Aznova’s goal is that disabled children are seen as actual right-holding individuals, that are respected and adequately cared for appropriately to their condition. She thinks that her project will be successful once disabled children will no longer be undermined or discriminated against in her region. Aznova’s other goal is that community leaders, service providers and local authorities realize the importance of serving disabled children and giving them adequate access to services like education, disabled-friendly infrastructure and cyclone shelters and adequate health services. How does Aznova work? Aznova plans on leading her project, but strongly counts on the involvement and participation of other children. She will coordinate the projects and cooperate with other children to achieve its success. What does Aznova need? Disabled-children friendly materials to play and learn Who does Aznova need? In order to implement her projects, Aznova will need support from professionals on disability issues to give disabled children their needed support and that respect their rights fully. Also, she needs the participation of (disabled) children and their parents.
Environment
Kids CleanSUP
What’s the problem?   Dean’s company WhaSUP NL gives SUP (Stand Up Paddling) tours through Schiedam and the surrounding area. During these tours, he sees a lot of trash in the water. He wants to fight this pollution and has decided to take action! What’s Dean’s solution? Dean wants to teach children how to keep their environment clean and why it is important to do so. He also wants to help them lead a healthy life, with proper nutrition and plenty of exercise. This is why he has started Kids CleanSUP, a project where he takes groups of kids (age 8-16) to clean up the waters of Schiedam and surroundings while SUPing. The children are taught the basics of SUPing and receive a course book about keeping the environment clean, proper nutrition and exercise. The children get a free trial lesson, Dean hopes that they will like it and come back. What’s the goal? The goal is to keep the water clean. He also wants to give the kids a fun and active day and teach them about food, exercise, and trash. How does Dean work? First Dean will make a flyer to inform people about Kids CleanSUP. He will also develop the lessons. The information should be fun and interesting to the children. He will organize the trial lessons himself and keep contact with the children afterwards so that they will sign up for more lessons. Who does Dean need?   Partners to sponsor SUPs and teaching materials Children to participate in the lessons KidsRights to help him execute Kids CleanSUP What does Dean need?   Flyers Food and drinks Enough SUPs
Violence
Betty’s school sessions
What is the problem?  Sexual violence is a daily occurrence in Betty’s community. Girls who are victims are ashamed and therefore keep their mouth shut, even though this may have a huge impact on them. These girls could have unwanted pregnancies, infections, STDs or other sexual diseases. Betty sees that when this happens, the girls usually drop out of school and lose their friends and family. The girls then have nowhere else to go. Betty has tried helping them, but needs help to do so. With the support of KidsRights she is setting up a project. What is Betty’s solution? School sessions: At school Betty wants to organize sessions every other week where about 20 to 30 students, victims of sexual violence, parents, school and village leaders can brainstorm about stopping sexual violence aimed at children. Visiting media & government:Together with a few participants of the school sessions she wants to visit diverse media companies and government institutions. She hopes that her plight will be heard and action will be taken. Betty is working with two media companies that are helping to reach as many people as possible. Awareness Walk: Betty wants to conclude with a protest march in which young people, children, adults and victims of sexual violence can walk together. In this way she wants to draw attention to sexual violence. She expects 200 participants. What is the goal? That all inhabitants are informed of children’s rights and that sexual violence aimed at children is finally stopped! How does Betty work?  Betty will focus on guiding the team. She is afraid that money will be problem. But she is also convinced that if you really want to get something done, you can also achieve it without money. Who does Betty need?   Organizations, school leaders, parents and village leaders are the ones needed to think about solutions, to take action and to reach out to others. The group at her school with whom she is working with. Read more about this group here. What does Betty need?   Advice on how she can set up her project. A wider audience so that the world knows what she is doing.
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