Our children's representative returns from the UNGA with hope

Tuesday 17 November 2015


Sierra Leone children’s representative to the just ended UNGA summit, Mariam Samai, has returned home with a success story to tell. In a special press conference organized on her return, Mariam confidently briefed the Sierra Leone media on the entire UNGA engagement, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the roles she played and successes achieved from the trip. 

In highlighting the successes, Mariam informed the media and her fellow children that the summit actually earned her numerous opportunities to engage the powers that be as well as to establish networks for future engagements. Prominent among the successes was the commitment she secured with EU to engage children on issues affecting them in Sierra Leone during their upcoming visits to the country. Perhaps most important of all was that Marta Santos, the … created a platform to connect an    d share key issues on violence against children to feed in her daily engagements with world leaders. “These success are not mine, they belong to all children in Sierra Leone. The successes could not have come without you”, she emphasized

As a responsible representative, Mariam immediately on her return briefed her colleagues of the Children’s Forum Network (CFN) on the entire trip in their usual weekly meeting. In addition, Save the Children also created a platform for her to share with her fellow children from other networks and communities the outcome of the UNGA summit as well as to reflect on the previous advocacy works so as to plan ahead for the post 2015 development agenda. 

The Children’s Forum Network in collaboration with other children’s groups also used the press conference to present to the media their position paper on children’s participation in the post 2015 development agenda with the key points highlighted below:

Call to Action by Children:

We the children of Sierra Leone are calling on key Government Ministries (Health, Education Social Welfare and Finance) as well as Office of the President to ensure the following:

  1. INVOLVE US: We want the above institutions to create a space for us to directly engage them on monthly basis for regular updates on activities delivered for us so that we in turn can give feedback to our fellow children. This will provide and promote transparency and accountability. 

  2. Public Engagement on government actions on the commitments made at the UNGA, highlighting the key priorities and clear road maps on how they intend to achieve them

  3. IMPLEMENTATION OF PROGRAMS & POLICIES: Parliamentarians and the Office of the Chief of Staff to design realistic and effective monitoring strategies for all key ministries so that service for us can reach us

  4. DESIGN CHILD FRIENDLY PLANS / DOCUMENTS – We are calling on all ministries and Transform the country strategy into a child friendly version so that we the children read, understand and interpret them