Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Whangarei first to register for Child Friendly Cities

Whangarei: New Zealand’s first city to register for Child Friendly Cities Initiative


UNICEF NZ and the Northland Intersectoral Forum (NIF) are pleased to announce that Whangarei is New Zealand’s first city to be registered with the Child Friendly Cities Initiative.

UNICEF NZ National Advocacy Manager, Deborah Morris-Travers said, “The Child Friendly Cities Initiative is a framework that guides councils and communities to put children first in their decision making, by bringing to life children’s rights at a local level.

This framework is a rigorous mechanism to make a city more accessible, safe and useable for its younger citizens who often don’t have a say. A child friendly city is one where children and young people are valued as citizens and have their interests respected, their voices heard and views considered.”

Child and Youth Friendly Whangarei Coordinator, Hannah Mitchell, said “We know that a child friendly city is a city that works for everyone. We are proud and excited that Whangarei is the first city in New Zealand to commit to developing a city that better meets the needs of children and youth.”

Whangarei Mayor, Sheryl Mai, agrees that UNICEF accreditation will benefit the children of the district, and therefore all residents. “This is yet another first for Whangarei. Working towards this accreditation aligns with the Council’s efforts in recent years of creating a place where our children feel safer, more valued and supported to grow. It brings with it a focus and impetus to continue our efforts in this direction.

“The key to our success will be partnership with organisations such as UNICEF, and also with local child and youth agencies, family members, children and youth themselves.

“There is no better insurance policy for a strong, healthy, well-functioning future society than collectively putting our resources into our children and young people today,” Mayor Mai added.

Ms Mitchell, who has been based at Manaia PHO, further explained, “Whangarei will be undertaking this work collectively through the Northland Intersectoral Forum. NIF has 19 members and includes all the heads of local and regional government agencies, the Northland District Health Board, the PHO, Sport Northland and Northland Inc. Members of the Forum have signed a Statement of Intent declaring their commitment to making Whangarei, and the rest of Northland, child and youth friendly.”

NIF co-chair Walter Wells added, “The NIF members agree tamariki and taitamariki deserve an environment where they can grow up healthy, protected and respected. The NIF Action Plan and Statement of Intent for a Child and Youth Friendly Whangārei builds on the important work of the NIF to support the wellbeing of all of our citizens.”

Mr Wells, also regional director for Te Puni Kōkiri, added, “The opportunity to be foundational members towards becoming a Child and Youth Friendly City is welcomed, and the plan provides practical guidance to creating wellbeing here in Whangārei.”

Ms Mitchell added, “Learning to see our city through a “child-friendly lens” is key to this work, which covers things such as child and youth participation, parks and recreation, road safety and housing. Initially, we’re gathering data to assess how well we’re currently doing, and then we’ll strengthen our current plans so that we can work methodically towards becoming a fully accredited UNICEF NZ Child Friendly City.

“In Whangarei we call it a “Child and Youth Friendly City” to ensure that young people know they are included.”

There are four stages involved in becoming a Child Friendly City:

1. Registering the city’s commitment to becoming a child-friendly city

2. Planning and implementing child friendly policy and practices across the city

3. Becoming a UNICEF accredited child friendly city

4. Continuing the good work and regularly assessing progress.

Ms Morris-Travers concluded, “UNICEF NZ congratulates the Northland Intersectoral Forum for its work to ensure that children and youth in the region do well. With councils around the country preparing their long term plans at the moment this is a timely reminder of what can be achieved when there’s a focus on children and the political will to make them a priority.

“The Child Friendly Cities Framework is grounded in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and provides a coherent basis on which to shape local initiatives that make a practical difference for children. Well done Whangarei!”

-Ends-

Notes to editors

The Child-Friendly Cities Initiative is an international UNICEF programme to engage local government and community partners to advance children's rights and interests. Based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the framework identifies areas of local government policy and practice that can help enable good outcomes for children, including child and youth participation, measuring child wellbeing, recreation, travel and housing. The Framework provides for local context so that Councils and communities can advance children's rights in ways that fit with local realities.

In New Zealand, a number of Councils are exploring the potential of becoming registered child friendly cities with a view to achieving full accreditation. This reflects a growing recognition that achieving better outcomes for children requires action at all levels of society, including local government.

www.unicef.org.nz/Child-Friendly-Cities

www.childfriendlycities.org/

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Anne Tolley’s
Callous Folly

Years ago, I remember someone in the Heath Ministry telling me off the record that regulatory oversight in this country largely consisted in ‘waiting for something to turn green or fall off somebody’ before the authorities would swing into action...

Last week’s conflict between Social Development Minister Anne Tolley and District Court judge Carolyn Henwood illustrated quite a few of the flaws in the system. More>>

 

Members’ Bills: Greens' Domestic Violence And Loans Bills Pulled From Ballot

Jan Logie’s Domestic Violence-Victims' Protection Bill introduces workplace protections for victims of domestic violence, including allowing victims to request paid domestic violence leave for up to 10 days... Gareth Hughes’ Bill allows Kiwis with student loans to defer their student loan repayments into a first home savings scheme. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA: Police Did Not 'Deliberately' Use Pepper Spray On 10-Year-Old

"When spraying the man, the officer did not properly consider the necessity of using pepper spray in a confined space, the likelihood that it would affect the other innocent passengers or the fact that he was using a more powerful spray." More>>

ALSO:

Donor Bill Passes: Full Income Compensation For Live Organ Donors

Unanimous cross-party support for the Compensation for Live Organ Donors Bill represents a critical step in reducing the burgeoning waiting list for kidney donations, according to Kidney Health New Zealand chief executive Max Reid. More>>

ALSO:

Earthquake Response: Emergency Legislation Prepared

Three new Bills have been drafted in the wake of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake on November 14 to ensure the government can enable affected communities to respond quickly and efficiently. More>>

ALSO:

Housing MPs: New Building(s) For Parliament

A new building will be erected on Parliament grounds to house Members of Parliament and their staff who currently work in leased accommodation in Bowen House. The plan has cross-Party support, apart from NZ First, said Parliament’s Speaker, Rt Hon David Carter. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news