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A Worldwide Commitment to Protecting Children’s Rights: November 20 marks 25th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child

November 20 is observed annually in Canada as National Child Day and worldwide as Universal Children’s Day to recognize the United Nations’ adoption of the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). This year marks the 25th anniversary of the CRC, which vows to protect and promote children’s rights.

The CRC is a treaty signed by most countries that defines the rights of children and how governments should care for and protect them. November 20 is a day to celebrate children for who they are; to promote mutual exchange and understanding among the world's children; to raise awareness of children that endure abuse, exploitation and discrimination; and to take action to benefit the welfare of all children. 

Some of the 50 rights of children include:

  • The right to an opinion, and for adults to listen and respect children’s opinions
  • The right to be protected from being hurt and mistreated, in body and mind
  • The right to food, clothing, a safe place to live and to have their basic needs met
  • The right to play and rest

On the 25th anniversary of the CRC there is much to celebrate in the advancement of child welfare, but this milestone also serves as a reminder of the work yet to be done to ensure the rights of children are protected both internationally and within Canada.  

Universal Children’s Day is devoted to educating children and adults worldwide about children’s rights and promoting the child welfare objectives of the UN Charter. Universal Children’s Day is a reminder of the global commitments to protect and advance the rights of children year long, give children a voice and help each child reach their full potential. 

For more resources on Universal Children’s Day and the CRC, visit:

Celebrate National Child Day 2014 - UNICEF Canada
Infographic: Convention on the Rights of the Child - UNICEF Canada
Classroom Activities for Children’s Rights - UNICEF Canada
Children of the Recession: The impact of the economic crisis on child well-being in rich countries - UNICEF-IRC
Infographic: Children of the Recession  - UNICEF-IRC
The Best Interests of the Child in Intercountry AdoptionUNICEF-IRC
National Child Day - Calendar of Events, Ways to Celebrate and Resources- Public Health Agency of Canada
National Child Day 2014 VideoProduced by Family & Children’s Services of Frontenac, Lennox & Addington

Read the National Children’s Day News Release in English and French.


Ontario Child Welfare Report 2014

On November 10, OACAS released the 2014 Ontario Child Welfare Report, which calls for a comprehensive strategy for ongoing improvements to the provincial child welfare system.

The Report presents six priority areas for change, as identified by Children's Aid Societies, the communities they serve and the social services partners they work with across Ontario:

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November is Adoption Awareness Month

In November, OACAS and Children's Aid Societies across Ontario work to raise awareness among the public and prospective adoptive parents of the need for lifelong, safe and nurturing homes for children and youth in care.

Children need to belonging to permanent and caring families; in Ontario, there are currently nearly 7,000 children and youth in the care of Children's Aid for whom adoption may be an option for achieving this.

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National Bullying Awareness Week: Nov. 16-22

Bullying Awareness Week is a nationwide campaign that raises awareness of bullying in Canadian schools by promoting positive relationships among students and offering resources to help identify and respond to bullying behaviour

The theme for the 2014 campaign is STAND UP ! to bullying! which encourages young people to intervene and report when they witness another child being bullied.  

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National Addictions Awareness Week: Nov. 18-24

Your Duty to ReportThe goal of National Addictions Awareness Week is to provide information and promote activities that discourage addictive behavior across the country.

While there is no known single cause of addiction, there are various factors that can cause a person to develop one.  

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World Day for Prevention of Child Abuse: Nov. 19

LGBT2SQThe World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse campaign strives to create of a culture of child abuse prevention and to foster global partnerships focused on raising awareness, mobilizing public opinion and disseminating prevention programs. 

The objective of the Day is to enable local and international organizations and networks to play a more effective role in protecting children from abuse in all forms and in all countries. 

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International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women: Nov. 25

The UN General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. This Day raises awareness of the fact that women and girls around the world are subject to various forms of gender-based violence, the scale and nature of which is often hidden.

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