Issues

10 Organizations Working to End Child Labor

1 Global March Against Child Labor

The Global March Against Child Labor (Global March) is a wide network of civil society organizations, trade unions and teachers, who work together to eliminate and prevent all forms of child labor, slavery and trafficking and that all children have access to free and quality public education.

The organization works to ensure that all children enjoy their rights, including free education, and that they are protected from being forced into labor, which hinders their development. The network mobilizes actors from across the world, to promote and protect rights of all children, especially the right to be free from economic exploitation and performing any type of labor that might hinder their mental, physical, spiritual, social and moral development. The network works to increase awareness about child labor and encourages countries to adopt and ratify conventions related to child labor. It also publicly engages to fight prejudices that contribute to child labor and works on eradication of the most oppressive forms of child labor.

2 Love 146

Love 146 is an international human rights NGO working to end child exploitation and trafficking through prevention and survivor care. The organization is helping grow the movement to end child labor and trafficking by providing effective and thoughtful solutions. It believes in the power of love and its ability to effect sustainable change. Love 146 serves children in the United States, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, and several countries in Africa.

Love 146 rescues children on the spot. It works with local authorities to provide care for children who have been affected by exploitation and trafficking. If appropriate, a child is placed with a trained Lover 146 carer. The organization uses a holistic approach to treat survivors. It has developed a special education curriculum titled Not a Number to teach young people how to protect themselves from exploitation and human trafficking through use of critical thinking, information and skill development. The organization also provides trainings to professionals through which they acquire tools that help them support the victims. Love 146 also trains workers and provides them with knowledge on how to reach and restore children in their care.

3 Stop Child Labor Coalition

The Stop Child Labor Coalition was established in 1989 with a belief that no child, regardless of their race, sex, nationality, religion, economic status, place of residence, or occupation, should be exploited. The mission of the organization is to serve as a national network for the exchange of information about child labor and provide a space for unified voice to end child labor, as well as educate both public and private sectors how to combat this issue.

The aim of the organization is to influence public policies on child labor issues by understanding the impact it had on health and quality of lives of children. It advocates for enforcement of laws and regulations regarding child labor and works on strengthening protection of children. The activities of the organization include conducting campaigns and media events, research, creating and distributing educational materials, hosting conferences and forums and testifying before the courts on cases of child labor.

4 Save the Children

Save the Children is one of the biggest international NGOs advancing and protecting rights of children in almost 120 countries around the world. Save the Children works in the most disadvantaged local communities educating them about the rights of children and helping them understand that children are meant to be at school and not work.

The protection program in child labor often includes improving the understanding of the situation of vulnerable children in need of care, building their resilience and supporting their participation in their own protection and supporting of community-based care and protection systems. the organization also works on building the care and protection of children into broader social welfare and other strategies. It also works on building the capacities of duty bearers to deliver appropriate care and protection for children and advocates for policies and laws that are in line with the standards set out in the UN Convention on Rights of the Child.

5 ACE

ACE is a Japanese based NGO for international cooperation with a vision to realize rights of children and safe society for all children. It takes direct action for the abolition and prevention of child labor with citizens of Japan. Currently, the ACE works on the abolition of child labor in Japan, India, and Ghana.

The organization operates not only through activities of international cooperation, but also through cooperation with private corporations and engagement in consumer education. In its work, the organization uses three strategies approach. First, it focused on agriculture in rural areas, with attention to cacao bean and cotton seed production areas, since 71% of all child laborers in the world are engaged in this sector. Second, it listens to children’s voices and uses that to bring improvement of schools and communities. Third, it helps communities achieve self-independence by establishing sustainable systems in cooperation with local governments.

6 International Initiative to End Child Labor

The International Initiative on Exploitative Child Labor (IIECL), or commonly known as International Initiative to End Child Labor is the US based NGO established in 1998 with an aim to provide training, technical assistance, research, capacity building, social accountability auditing, resources, program planning and design, and monitoring and evaluation services to public and private sector, NGOs , and international research and development institutions that seek to eliminate the worst forms of child labor in the US and around the world.

The organization strongly advocates that education should be put in first place for all children and raises awareness of the issue of child labor nationally and internationally. The IEECL provides effective strategies and solutions in areas that promote a quality education for children and ensures that operations or programs of both public and private sectors initiate in any way conditions that would enforce child labor. It also works with local NGOs to identify child labor in their communities to be able to provide assistance and technical support to abandon the practice.

7 Centre for Child Rights

Centre for Child Rights is a human rights organization with a focus on all children rights and recognizing children as citizens of today and adults of tomorrow. The vision of the organization is “an inclusive society where all children grow up in an environment that rests on the principle of non-discrimination and equality and where the human rights of all children are recognized, protected and realize”.

The organization works on the protection of children’s rights and fights against child labor in India, which is one of the countries with the highest percentage of child laborers in the world. In order to achieve this, the organization conducts research and documentation and actively engages in advocacy and public education on children’s rights. It also acts as a resource and support to those dealing with children at every level. The organization also conducts the children and governance program, under which it monitors all levels of government through budget for children budget, debates in parliaments and engaging with the justice delivery mechanisms. Last but not least, the organization provides legal aid and counselling to children who are victims of abuse and child labor, as well as those who come in contact at law and it undertakes capacity building with actors who work with children, such as police and teachers.

8 The ECLT Foundation

The Eliminating Child Labor in Tobacco-Growing Foundation (ECLT) was founded in 2000, with a commitment to pursue collaborative solutions for children and their families that combat the root causes of child labor in tobacco-growing areas. The ECLT works on joining together actors within the tobacco supply chain, including growers, manufacturers and leaf supplies, to reduce the impact of industry on child labor.

The organization is a member of the UN Global Compact and a holder of special consultative status of the UN Economic and Social Council. It supports and promotes international legal standards with an aim to contribute to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. One of its tasks include to continuously advance tobacco businesses to act in accordance with international legal standards. The organization also, through it internship program, trains young graduates to become future leaders in the elimination of child labor as well as to develop and deepen their knowledge about human rights issues and business.

9 World Vision

World Vision is one of the largest child-focused organizations in the world employing around 40.000 staff members working in nearly 100 countries. The organization’s task is to tackle the root causes of poverty and currently, it impacts the lives of over 200 million vulnerable children. The organization works based on Christian values and it is an advocacy and development organization tasked to improve the lives of children, their families and communities and create a long-lasting impact. World Vision serves all people, regardless of their gender, ethnicity, race or religion.

World Vision helps all children, including survivors of child labor by helping them to return to normal life or remedying circumstances that led to exploration in the first place. It works with communities, governments and the UN to tackle child labor and commits to solutions to provide care and attention to children to prevent them ending up as victims of child labor. It also teaches people to identify situations in which child might be exploited. So far, World Vision has played a big part in decreasing the number of child laborers across the world.

10 International Catholic Child Bureau

The International Child Catholic Bureau (BICE) was established in 1948 as an international NGO. It serves as an international network of 80 organizations from around the world, that defend dignity and rights of children. The organization’s work is based on the Convention on the Rights of Child, a convention that BICE helped to develop. BICE works to serve all children, regardless of their culture, nationality, religion or ethnicity.

BICE fights against child labor. In different countries, depending on their cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, BICE acts with discretion on the issue of child labor to defend rights of child workers. For example, the organization implemented project in Togo to protect 600 children a year and to influence the issue on national level. It used emergency hotlines, media and public awareness as well as child care. Similarly, in Paraguay, the organization works with local NGOs to tutor children who were child workers to continue their studies and raises awareness on the risks of child labor and provides solutions to prevent it.

About the author

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Ada Hasanagic

Ada Hasanagić is a human rights professional currently working as a researcher at the Delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Previously, Ada graduated with honors from the Sarajevo School of Science and Technology and the University of Buckingham in the fields of Political Science and International Relations. Also, she earned a master’s degree in Democracy and Human Rights from the University of Sarajevo and University of Bologna.