NEW YORK, Sept. 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Today at the United Nations, The World Childhood Foundation USA, together with the Permanent Missions of Sweden and Italy, and in collaboration with the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, convened an exceptional group of global leaders for "Solutions to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals for Children," a high level meeting. At this meeting, they discussed the unprecedented opportunity that the new global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide to renew a commitment to one third of the global population: children.
Representatives from governments, foundations, the UN, civil society, academia and the private sector came together to (1) conceptualize solutions and create concrete and measurable actions that will contribute to the achievement of the SDGs for the global benefit of children and (2) discuss the role of new partnerships, collective actions, and emerging new multi-sectorial approaches in this process. The goal of the meeting was to illustrate the power of working together to address the most basic needs of the future custodians of the planet: our children.
"The safety of children is every adult's responsibility. Governments and organizations must work together to invest in their wellbeing, education and protection." – Her Royal Highness Princess Madeleine of Sweden.
Moderated by Robyn Curnow, CNN Anchor/Correspondent, the meeting featured keynote addresses from global leaders including, Irina Bokova, Director General, UNESCO, Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director, UNFPA, David Nabarro, Special Advisor on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, UN and Kailash Satyarthi, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.
Following a special performance by the "Voices of Haiti" Children's Choir, the first panel, which included Andrea Bocelli, Maestro, Activist, Founder of Andrea Bocelli Foundation, Jeffrey D. Sachs, SDG Advocate of the UN Secretary General; Director, UNSDSN, Olov Kjorven, Director of Public Partnerships, UNICEF, Dr. Susan Bissell, Director, Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children, Father Rick Frechette, St. Luke Foundation for Haiti, and Ahmad Alhendawi, UN Secretary General's Envoy on Youth, focused on ways the UN system, governments, civil society and academia can use the SDGs' framework to scale up actions and implement solutions that can ensure the wellbeing and security of children by 2030.
The second portion of the meeting featured an in-depth discussion with Forest Whitaker, Actor, Activist; Mats Pellbäck Scharp, Head of Sustainability, Ericsson; Dr. Joanna Rubinstein, President & CEO, World Childhood Foundation USA; Paul Sistare, CEO & President, Atlantica Hotels International, Brazil; Kees Kruythoff, CEO (TBC), Unilever North America; Dr. James F. Leckman, Yale University, and Early Childhood Peace Consortium; and Dr. Lyndon Haviland, CEO, Darkness To Light, about the power of multi-stakeholder partnerships to spur the development of scalable solutions to improve child survival and promote child wellbeing and protection.
Illustrating the power of working together, during the meeting a video featuring HRH Princess Madeleine revealed the launch of a new mobile application, "Stewards of Children Prevention Toolkit." This app was developed as a response to Her Majesty Queen Silvia challenging the global communications technology company Ericsson, at last year's meeting, to create an app for child protection. Over the last year Ericsson worked with Childhood USA and the nonprofit Darkness to Light to develop and launch an interactive app that will equip adults with the tools and resources necessary to recognize, prevent and respond to child sexual abuse.
"Child sexual abuse is a public health crisis facing millions of children. With the Sustainable Development Goals, world leaders can no longer close their eyes to violence against children. Our partnership with Ericsson and Darkness to Light illustrates how public and private partnerships create solutions that can help to keep children safe." Dr. Joanna Rubinstein, President and CEO of World Childhood Foundation USA.
The World Childhood Foundation
World Childhood Foundation was founded in 1999 by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden with the mission to defend children's right to a happy and safe childhood, free from sexual abuse and exploitation. To date, the Foundation has provided support to over 1000 projects in more than 20 countries including the US. In recent years, Queen Silvia's daughter, HRH Princess Madeleine, launched #EyesWideOpen, a global advocacy initiative with the goal of building greater awareness surrounding the issue of child sexual abuse. #EyesWideOpen provides users with resources to prevent, recognize, and respond to child sexual abuse and exploitation. For more information, visit www.childhood-usa.org and www.thankyou.org/eyeswideopen
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SOURCE World Childhood Foundation