Kids to get lessons on climate change

Monday, October 31, 2011

Pretoria - Minister for Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Lulu Xingwana, will spend this year's National Children's Day empowering children with information on global warming and climate change.

Over 3 000 children will on Saturday converge at the Union Buildings, where they will get an opportunity to interact with Xingwana and different governmental departments, who will be exhibiting how best they can contribute towards the reduction of climate change.

National Children's Day is observed every year on the first Saturday of November to celebrate progress being made towards the realisation and promotion of rights of children.

This year's celebration will be held under the theme "We are the World, Plant a Tree and Save the Earth", which is linked to the 17th Conferences of the Parties (COP 17) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to be held in Durban from 28 November to 9 December 2011.

Xingwana said that in order to fully celebrate children, there is a need to raise awareness on the consequences of global warming and climate change.

"The department is aware that climate change can have adverse effects on children, it may undermine our capacity to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

"Climate change can increase the burden of disease on children, increase poverty levels and ultimately cause death, it exposes children to unbearable weather conditions that may cause deterioration of the quality of their lives," said Xingwana.

The minister will also use the occasion to present the child-friendly version of the National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC) to the children.

Children will be encouraged to take the document home, read through and make inputs through their institutions including schools, child and youth care centres.

"This will form part of the consultations on the NPAC, where children themselves participate and give input to the policy process that seeks to enhance their own development," she said.

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