Canadian Screen Award-winning actor, and Harvard freshman Saara Chaudry announced today that she is taking on a new, exciting role as UNICEF Canada Ambassador. Today, as part of her new role, she hosted UNICEF Canada’s virtual Youth Activism Summit. She also invited all Canadians to celebrate the upcoming National Child Day on November 20 with a series of activities and events to champion children’s rights in Canada.
“My journey with UNICEF Canada began as a UNICEF Youth Advocate, and I am thrilled to continue that journey as a UNICEF Canada ambassador,” said Saara Chaudry. “The work that UNICEF Canada is doing is vital. There is so much more that needs to be done at home in Canada and around the world for children and youth, especially after enduring years of the pandemic. I am humbled to continue to learn more about the most pressing issues, speak out against injustice, and do the important and necessary work that is needed in order to enforce change for those who need it most. This National Child Day and World Children’s Day I encourage everyone to #GoBlue and speak up for every child’s right to a childhood.”
UNICEF Canada’s National Child Day and World Children’s Day celebrations kicked off today and run until November 20 with:
- The virtual Youth Activism Summit on November 14 brought together young people, partners, adult influencers and decision-makers. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon, the Governor-General of Canada, attended the event, while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, Marci Ien, and actor and UNICEF Canada ambassador Simu Liu shared video messages for the youth.
- Young people at the event spoke out and shared their recommendations on climate change, gender-based violence, healthcare equity, and BIPOC rights. Their recommendations are captured in the Reimagine Playbook 2022. The Youth Activism Summit was hosted in partnership with BGC Canada, Equitas, the International Institute for Child Rights and Development, Save the Children Canada, the Students Commission of Canada and YMCA Canada.
- UNICEF Youth Advocates will continue to have conversations with decision makers through the week. On November 15, a UNICEF Youth Advocate will be speaking at the Senate National Child Day Breakfast, while another UNICEF Youth Advocate will be speaking at a conference hosted by the Edwin S.H. Leong Centre for Healthy Children at the University of Toronto on November 18.
- On November 20, UNICEF Canada is inviting everyone to #GoBlue to champion children’s rights. To show their support, people in Canada can wear blue and colour their neighbourhoods, organizations and social media blue. In fact, UNICEF Canada has created a Go Blue Toolkit with activities and photo props to help people across the country join in. Political leaders and celebrities have committed to post messages for young people to champion their rights on that day.
- A number of iconic landmarks across the country will be going blue, including the CN Tower, Calgary Tower, Olympic Park Tower in Montreal, and Niagara Falls.
November 20 marks the date in 1989 that the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child came into effect, and is celebrated around the globe as World Children’s Day. It is dedicated to shining a light on the rights of children and youth, and listening to what they have to say about issues that matter to them.
“National Child Day and World Children’s Day is an occasion to remember that all children have all the rights included in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, without exception,” said David Morley, President and CEO, UNICEF Canada. “It is important for children and adults to know and understand children’s rights. As adults, we also have a responsibility to support children as they learn how to use their rights, to respect them, and to listen to their views when we make decisions affecting them. We’re calling on everyone to recognize, talk about and make a commitment to the rights of children and youth in Canada.”