A BLOG POST BY LOUISE MEINCKE FOR STREET CHILDREN
Some estimates of street children run as high as 100 million – the truth is that no one really knows. Street children are marginalised and stigmatised, but also some of the most resilient and inspiring children and young people in the world today. Every day they have to face abuse and neglect, whilst struggling to survive.
“People would treat you badly. They’d say things like ‘go away’. They would say lots of things, but I don’t want to say what they said. It makes me feel bad because they don’t know how you feel and they don’t care either”
It was on this basis that the Consortium for Street Children (CSC) launched the International Day for Street Children on 12th April in 2011. The Day provides a platform for the millions of children around the world to speak out so their rights cannot be ignored. Since 2011 support for the Day has grown exponentially, with street children, NGOs, policy-makers, academics and celebrities getting involved in the yearly celebration – these include footballer Steven Gerrard, film maker Danny Boyle, former Prime Minister Sir John Major, as well as being supported by private sector companies Aviva and HSBC.
This year, we are asking street children around the world ‘If the whole world were listening, what would you say’? We will be compiling these answers into an animation which will be released on 12th April. Through Twitter we will increase public awareness through #TweetfortheStreet, as well as encourage individuals to tell us ‘what would you say’ on our dedicated Facebook tab: https://www.facebook.com/streetchildrenday.
In 2013 CSC launched a campaign for the United Nations to officially adopt the Day, which would bring greater exposure, continuity and permanence of the issue and increase pressure on Governments to act. The petition has over 6000 signatories so far. For more information and to show your support go to: http://www.streetchildrenday.org.
Consortium for Street Children
 Street girl in Ecuador, http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Children/Study/OHCHRBrochureStreetChildren.pdf