Child Labour: Everyone Deserves a Childhood
All over the world, children are being exploited through child labour. It’s dangerous both physically and mentally to a child’s development, and interferes with schooling and the hope for a better future. All forms are exploitive, but the worst forms include slavery, sexual exploitation and hazardous work that risks disease, injury or death.
Child labour can be defined as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential, or their dignity. Child labour is dangerous and exceeds reasonable hours and interferes with a child’s education.
Child labourers regularly face abuse, and their families are often trapped in a cycle of poverty that will keep continuing with each generation.
Addressing child labour – Moral and practical
Addressing child labour is the morally correct thing to do. Every child has the right to feel safe, receive an education and have a childhood. All things deprived through unlawful labour. Beyond this, it’s also in society best practical interest.
Ending child labour promotes technological advancement and sustainable growth in industries like farming, raw material and manufacturing.
In addition, child labour has been shown to depress wages and increase adult unemployment. Ending child labour means workers are invested in and paid fairly, increasing economic prosperity and increasing trade.
The whole world benefits when society focuses on increasing the skills and capacities of adults and helping them reach their potential while children are allowed to enjoy growing up.
How you can help
Everyone can help end child labour. One of the most effective ways is by voting with your wallet. Shopping ethically and being conscious of your purchases is a small, but collectively powerful step.
Many products that may surprise you have been created through child labour, including coffee, chocolate and our clothes. In many cases, it is children planting the cotton in the clothes we buy, or harvesting the beans in our coffee.
All of us can do our part to discourage child labour and ensure that parents can earn decent wages to support their families and break the cycle of poverty. If kids can be in the classroom instead of the cotton fields, child labour can end within a generation.
How foundations help
Foundations work directly with children, their communities and the broader government to help end child labour. They even work with the United Nations.
Both short-term and long-term solutions play a pivotal role in preventing children from ending up in unfair circumstances and providing the care and attention required for those already in need.
In a lot of poor communities, child protection structures don’t exist. Foundations work by educating communities and the government to provide these frameworks and help teach people to identify and report situations where a child may be being exploited. Foundations also educate children directly on how to protect themselves.
Important work is also being done to help children who have been rescued from traumatic experiences to overcome their past and be put on track to a prosperous future.
Once and for all
Child labour dissapears when people at all levels work together, from individuals, to communities, to governing bodies.
Ethical purchasing is a step you can take right and have already played an enormous role in letting kids just be kids.