Bali 8 March, 2022 – Civil 20 (C20), which is one of the G20 engagement groups, held a kick off meeting on 7/3 in Bali. As a member of C20, Save the Children initiates a side event/meeting to highlight the urgency of the issues and risks facing children around the world. C20 is a space for stakeholders to participate in voicing priority issues that need to be taken into account seriously.
“Today, children and youth around the world are faced with global threats namely COVID-19, Climate Crisis, War and Conflict, and livelihood crises. These threats present a great risk for the future and the sustainable planet Earth where children can live safely, comfortably and have their rights met. For this very reason, it is important to call for this issue to be a priority in the G20 discussions” explained Selina Patta Sumbung – CEO of Save the Children Indonesia.
In 2022, as the holder of the Group 20 (G20) Presidency, the Government of Indonesia seeks to build understanding among G20 leaders regarding various issues facing the global community in order to recover together and recover stronger. This is in line with the main theme of G20 Recover Together, Recover Stronger.
C20 is a forum for civil society organizations around the world to bridge the global civil community movement to G20 policy and decision makers. C20 seeks to voice issues of civil society are concerned and interested in. One of the issues are pertaining to Education, Digitalization, and Public Space.
This Side Event, organized by Save the Children, brought up important issues that need attention from all parties and G20 Leaders, including 1) the issue of gender-based violence, one of which is marked by child marriage; 2) the issue of child protection in the online space where due to the pandemic children are exposed to the digital and online world; 3) the problem of access to vaccines, not only the COVID-19 vaccine but also the disruption of the implementation of regular vaccinations; 4) climate crisis and child resilience; and 5) the issue of gender equality in children and the need for adaptive social protection.
Data and facts that strengthen these problematic issues have been stated and captured by various parties, such as: Unicef (2020) states that every year, 12 million girls get married before they are 18. It was further stated that 21% of young women were married before their 18th birthday. The DQ (Digital Quotient) Institute (2020) found that globally, children aged 8-12 years are experiencing a problem called a cyber pandemic. There are 60% of children 8-12 years old who are exposed to the risks of the digital world including meeting strangers or experiencing sexual harassment, violence or pornography content, threats, social media interference, cyber-bullying, and reputational risks.
In the health sector, the data also shows a poor picture. According to WHO and UNICEF, the coverage of regular childhood vaccinations has decreased from 86% in 2019, to 83% in 2020. It is estimated that 23 million children under 1 (one) year of age do not receive standard vaccines. This figure is the highest since 2009. By 2020, the number of children who were not vaccinated at all increased to 3.4 million.
In the context of the climate crisis, Save the Children’s latest 2021 global report “Born Into the climate Crisis”, illustrates that children born in 2020 are the most severely affected by this climate crisis. Globally, children born in 2020 will face 7% more forest fires, 26% more crop failures, 31% more droughts, 30% more river flooding and 65% more heat waves if global warming stopped at 1.5°C.
Meanwhile on the issue of gender discrimination, Save the Children also highlighted that gender discrimination often starts from childhood. Girls tend to have their rights denied, not in school, forced into marriage and subject to violence. Furthermore, their voices are not appreciated or even heard at all.
“Most government policies have a direct or indirect impact on the lives of children and young people. But, these policies are often taken and implemented without paying attention to what is really needed by children and young people” explained Putri Gayatri / 22 years old / Chair of the Advisory Board for children and young people – Children & Youth Advisory Network – Save the Children Indonesia
In addition, Putri emphasized, “Failure to listen can lead to wrong decision making, so get involved and listen to us. We stand ready to work together to achieve an inclusive and stronger recovery.”
Through this Side Event, Save the Children and global civil society organizations hope that world leaders, especially Group 20 (G20) leaders, can immediately take concrete actions to address the impact of various problems that put children and young people live and future at very great risk.
“We, as representatives of global civil organizations, especially those that focus on efforts to fulfill children’s rights, hope that world leaders could listen to and involve children in decision-making dialogue and prioritize the interests of children on the G20 agenda.” said Selina Patta Sumbung – CEO of Save the Children Indonesia
Note for Editor
About Save the Children
Save the Children in Indonesia is registered under the name of the Save the Children Indonesia Foundation based on the Decree of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights No. AHU-0001042.AH.01.05 Year 2021. Save the Children Indonesia is part of the global Save the Children International movement that works to fight for children’s rights in more than 120 countries in the world. In Indonesia, the Save the Children mission has been carried out since 1976.
Currently, Save the Children operates in 10 provinces, 79 districts, 701 sub-districts and 918 villages. Our program focuses on child welfare that integrates across sectors including education, health, child protection, poverty and child rights governance, as well as disaster response. More details can visit www.savethechildren.or.id