What we believe
Children Change Colombia believes that:
- Every child has the right to a childhood in a safe and loving family environment, free from the threat of poverty, violence or exploitation.
- Families, communities, government and non-government agencies all have a duty to ensure children can fulfil their rights.
- Viewing children as passive victims in need of protection, however well meaning, can actively hinder the fulfilment of their rights. Seeing children only as victims denies their capacity to make choices.
- While a child may lack an adult's knowledge and experience of the world, their thoughts and feelings are of equal value to those of an adult.
- From a very young age children have a sense of their own identity and preferences, and the capacity to make choices about how they would like their lives to change.
- It is the duty of adults to protect, support and guide children, and help them to take an active part in the decisions that affect their lives.
- Children need help to develop their skills, confidence and capacity for self-expression from within safe and supportive homes, schools and communities.
- Only with a sense of their own worth - and the confidence to assert their rights - can children properly take advantage of opportunities to build happy and secure lives. Children Change Colombia exists to help the most vulnerable children in Colombia do this.
Threats to children's rights in Colombia are complex
Threats to children's rights in Colombia are complex and varied. Children Change Colombia believes that these threats are best understood by those closest to them. This is why we work in partnership with children and families to help them defend children's rights and to find solutions to their everyday problems.
A child's vulnerability often has multiple causes and many different people and institutions have an influence on their welfare: for example, a child's risk of being a victim of commercial sexual exploitation is affected by their parents' economic situation, the quality of their local school, the professionalism of their social worker and the protection they receive from the police.
For this reason, Children Change Colombia believes that if all children in Colombia are to enjoy their right to a safe and happy childhood, children, families, communities, government and non-government agencies must work together.
The skills, knowledge and will to defend the rights of children are widespread in Colombia.
Much goodwill and support from the UK for children at risk in Colombia would remain untapped if Children Change Colombia did not exist. It is our duty to maximise this support.