With the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child coming next year, we decided last year to reflect upon where children’s rights are heading in a world that seems increasingly beset with challenges for children, for families, and for communities. We also wanted to revisit the issue of children affected by armed conflict, mobilization around which has served as a motor for the broader child protection agenda for years. We worked with Joachim Theis, who developed The State of International Children’s Rights, and Riva Kantowitz, who wrote Children and Armed Conflict: A Field Scan. These documents both synthesis and analysis, recognizing gains that have been made while asking, “Is there a new way of doing things? What new paths forward might we forge, collectively?”
The documents served as a springboard for a two-day in-person meeting in August of last year. Bringing together thought leaders who have made contributions to children’s rights and child protection through a variety of lenses and approaches—human rights activism, legal reform, women’s rights, community-driven work, measurement and evidence generation, child welfare, and others—we challenged ourselves to think about what we are doing right—and wrong—to promote child protection and children’s rights in a world that seems ever more challenging. From that workshop, we produced a short thought piece—Recommitting to Child Rights and Child Protection in a Turbulent World—that serves not only as a brief summary of our discussions but also a call to action. We hope that you will enjoy reading it—as well as the two longer reports that informed it—and be in touch with you as we seek ways to move forward, together.