Text and photos by Czech Embassy in Manila
In celebration of the United Nations International Human Rights Day, Czech Embassy in Manila in partnership with UNICEF Philippines organized a working breakfast on children’s rights and education in time of COVID-19 attended by local non-government organizations on 11 December.
The breakfast event held at Makati Diamond Residences gathered local NGOs working specifically for children’s rights to discuss the situation of education in the Philippines especially in time of COVID-19 pandemic. UNICEF Philippines represented by Mr. Behzad Noubary, Deputy Representative, and Ms. Teresita Felipe, Education Specialist, presented the six-point agenda of UNICEF in addressing the challenges on children’s rights exacerbated further by the pandemic.
“The COVID-19 crisis is a child right’s crisis. Children are affected by the pandemic in various ways which could impede the full realization of their rights. We welcome the partnership with the Czech embassy to highlight this issue and support children’s recovery,” said UNICEF representative Mr. Noubary.
The breakfast also provided an avenue to discuss vital issues on Philippine education crisis involving digital divide, accessibility, and accountability where the need to challenge disinformation and disseminate information on positive and negative impact of re-opening face-to-face classes were emphasized.
“In celebration of the UN Human Rights Day, this tradition of Czech Republic to conduct working breakfast with human rights activists is an opportunity to provide platform that allows collective discussion and collaborative actions especially on children’s rights. The Embassy recognizes the importance of highlighting this issue especially that children are one of the vulnerable actors affected by the pandemic,” said Czech Ambassador Mrs. Jana Šedivá.
The event was conducted in commemoration of the 1988 working breakfast held by the French Embassy in Prague that gathered human rights defenders during the communist regime, which has then become a Czech tradition. The breakfast is also held under the umbrella of the UN Human Rights Day celebrated by the Delegation of the European Union and its member states in the Philippines.