International Day of the African Child is being celebrated 16th June of every year. The event was established by African Union in 1991 in memory of students who were massacred in Soweto, South Africa in 1976. Thousands of students were shot at, some killed while some were badly injured. The most popular of them was Hector Pieterson, a 12 year old child. The students were said to have held a protest against the injustice experienced in the education system of that time.
Events are being held in their hundreds in over forty countries in honour of the Day of the African Child.
Among the aims of the Day of the African Child are to educate people on the harms associated with female genital mutilation and child marriage. Research has it that thirty million girls in Africa are in danger of experiencing FGM and that one of every three girls in low and middle income countries are married off by their 18th birthday. To this effect, the African Union set up a campaign in May to end child Marriage.
The international Day of the African Child 2022 will be celebrated on Thursday, June 16th by the African Union and its Member States. The theme for the Day of the African Child 2022 is “Eliminating Harmful Practices Affecting Children: Progress on Policy And Practice since 2013”. The theme was selected by the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.
Individuals can however support the vision of the Day of the African Child by taking part in donations and charity systems for minors, voluntary efforts at local schools, and learning about the continent, people and pressing issues.