international leaders join forces at Global Summit to address critical challenges facing childhood
Hundreds of child advocates and experts from nations around the world
convene to discuss threats to childhood and formulate actions
From March 28th- 31st, the Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI) welcomed delegates from more than 70 countries to the first established Global Summit on Childhood, to examine the challenges facing childhood internationally and explore ways to address them.
The Summit was held in Washington, D.C., and brought together individuals and organizations from many child-serving sectors to provide a platform for international, cross-cultural, and cross-disciplinary discussions on topics affecting children, including education, mental and physical well-being, and other issues that directly impact the experience of childhood today. The Summit looked at such diverse issues as the commercialization of childhood, child trafficking, the genetic manipulation of human life, and the philosophical meaning of childhood, itself.
“We were extremely pleased to provide a global meeting place for a more holistic conversation on childhood,” commented Diane Whitehead, Executive Director of the Association for Childhood Education International. “We wanted to bring together educators, psychologists, child advocates, medical practitioners, sociologists, and others from around the world who work with children and on children’s issues to discuss the threats to childhood and begin to formulate ways to address them. The future of humankind depends not only on our ability to understand the dangers to childhood but also on the collective action we take to protect childhood.”
At the Summit, ACEI and the Alliance for Childhood launched the Decade for Childhood, a 10-year initiative, 2012-2022, that provides formal opportunities for individuals and organizations to continue to disseminate knowledge, consider best policies and practices, and support a global conversation about childhood.
Joan Almon, Executive Director of the Alliance for Childhood, said “This is a pivotal moment when the global community of caring people can turn its attention toward childhood and recognize its vital importance in human development. It takes time to raise and educate a child to become a healthy and creative human being, and economic and other pressures too often lead countries to hurry children through childhood and into adult-like behaviors. This deprives children of the time to fully develop and contributes to the large increases in physical and mental illness we see in children today. The Decade for Childhood gives us a chance to build awareness about children’s health and well-being and to mobilize forces for change at the grass roots level and through political leadership and policy changes.”
The Association for Childhood Education International will offer Global Summits on Childhood throughout the Decade for Childhood. Another Global Summit on Childhood is being planned for 2014. The location is to be determined.
You can access the Decade for Childhood page at: http://www.acei.org/programs-initiatives/the-decade-for-childhood-2011-2021.html
Global Partnership on
Children With Disabilites
advancing the rights of
children with disabilities
Multicultural Teaching in the Early Childhood Classroom