In places where human rights are neglected or oppressed, children often suffer the most. They are vulnerable and need the protection of more powerful groups. Unfortunately, these powerful groups are frequently the ones responsible for the abuse in the first place. Organizations like the five in this list focus on children’s rights and advocacy
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund was created by the U.N. in 1946 following WWII and its devastating effects on children. Today, UNICEF is active in 190 countries and territories. Their focuses include protecting children’s rights, nutrition and early development, education, and emergency aid.
Job opportunities appear periodically on the UNICEF website. Many of them include consulting gigs with specific programs, like the Policy Lab, which analyzes political economies and investigates new policies. A more permanent job, like a Planning Specialist, requires an advanced university degree, five years of experience, and fluency in both English and another official UN language.
Save the Children
As the leading independent organisation for children (and one of the oldest with a founding date of 1919), Save the Children focuses on health, education, and economic opportunities. They also give emergency aid following conflicts like war and natural disasters. They are an international organisation and employ more than 1,500 people in 120 countries. They are also leaders of the Save the Children Alliance, a global network that support local partners and Save the Children International.
Save the Children offers a wide range of careers in every imaginable field. They need teachers, bus drivers, web developers, program coordinators, psychologists, and more in all of the countries where they serve. The organisation also regularly offers internships and volunteering opportunities.
Defence for Children
Founded in 1979, the same year as the first International Year of the Child, Defence for Children focuses on children affected by armed conflict, child victims of human trafficking, child labor, and other topics. Their principles are guided by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and they are a member of the Coalition to Stop the Use of Children Soldiers and the Child Rights information Network.
Defence for Children will periodically offer jobs at the International Secretariat in Geneva, as well as opportunities with national sections, which support the DCI in their countries. These in-the-field jobs will include work on various issues facing children, such as child labor, violence and advocacy.
This organization empowers children while serving their needs and advocating for their rights. On their site, KidsRights describes kids as “changemakers” and believes their voices are essential within their communities. Based in the Netherlands, KidsRights also works in countries like South Africa, the Philippines and India.
To work for KidsRights, you must be committed to improving children’s lives and fighting for justice. They have a small team, so opportunities are limited. The organisation also does not send employees abroad, as they prefer to let local partners work in their respective countries.
Children’s Defense Fund
Founded by Marian Wright Edelman, the first black woman admitted to the Mississippi Bar and former director of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the Children’s Defense Fund strives to empower and protect children. Supported through a combination of foundation, corporate grants, and individual donations, the Children’s Defense Fund focuses on issues like poverty, education, and healthcare.
To find work with this organisation, search positions on their site by location. Opportunities will differ in their requirements; for a program manager, you’ll need five years of experience, a passion for the CDF’s mission, good writing skills, and more.
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University of Geneva