For Children's Week 2020, ACYP engaged with children and young people through the NSW Children's Week 2020 Art Competition and the NSW Children's Parliament online event. Children’s Week ran from 24 October to 1 November. The Children’s Week National Theme for 2020 was the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Article 15: Children have the right to choose their own friends and safely connect with others. Find out more about these activities below.
For Children's Week, ACYP together with the NSW Children’s Week Council invited children and young people to enter the NSW Children's Week 2020 Art Competition. Children and young people up to the age of 18 could create an artwork to show how they were keeping safely connected with their family, friends and community during this time. This was an opportunity for children and young people to find inspiration and share their voice though art.
More than 300 entries were received that showed the amazing ways that children and young people have been safely connecting and how thoughtful they have been of those around them. The entries included drawings, paintings, photographs, digital illustrations and videos. The standard was incredibly high, making judging a difficult task.
The selected entries were decided by the A/Advocate for Children and Young People, Zoë Robinson, together with the NSW Youth Advisory Council, the Chair of the NSW Children’s Week Council, Julie Hourigan Ruse and ABC Early Childhood Education Producer, Laura Stone.
On Thursday 29 October 2020, 91 children and young people came together to participate in NSW Children’s Parliament during Children's Week. NSW Children's Parliament provides an opportunity for children and young people to voice their ideas, passions and experiences. Representing 89 electorates, the young people were given the opportunity to create solutions to the issues they are passionate about and present those ideas to decision makers.
ACYP continued their valued partnership with the Y to deliver the one-day program which was offered to children and young people in years 7-10. The young people attended the online event from across areas in NSW including Sydney, the Illawarra, Hunter, South East, Riverina Murray, New England, North Coast, West and Far West.
On the day, the A/Advocate for Children and Young People, Zoë Robinson provided advocacy training and the young people were given encouraging words by the CEO of the Y, Susannah Le Bron and the Chair of NSW Children's Week, Julie Hourigan Ruse. The young people heard from a panel of Members of Parliament who included: Ms Abigail Boyd, MLC, Mr Dugald Saunders MP, Mr Greg Piper MP, Ms Jodie Harrison MP, and the Hon. Mark Speakman, SC MP. The MPs discussed their roles as elected representatives, how they became Members as well as the topics important to them.
Leading up to the day, the young people were asked to prepare a one-minute speech about an issue they are passionate about that affects children and young people in NSW. They then presented their speeches in small groups with decision makers. Some of the key areas discussed included: mental health, climate change and other environmental concerns, education and issues specific to young people in regional NSW.