Introducing children around the country to the concept of children’s rights and responsibilities; stressing equality and respect for themselves and the responsibility to protect these rights for others.
Today many more people are aware that children have rights and these rights must be protected. This growing awareness in the general population and, in particular, among children, leads to the urgent need for accessible information and new methods and materials to teach the issue to children.
The Children’s Rights Mobile Unit is an innovative program designed to reach out to the nation’s children in answer to this need. The Mobile Unit introduces children to the concept of children’s rights and responsibilities; stressing violence prevention, equality and respect for themselves and the responsibility to protect these rights for others.
The mobile unit, in operation since April 1998, has already reached tens of thousands of children - Jewish and Arab - in schools, community centers, summer camps and youth groups around the country.
This innovative educational program includes enjoyable and thought provoking games and activities using educational tools and materials developed specifically for this purpose. The children, divided into small groups, visit different “stations”, each providing a different interactive activity regarding different children's rights. Each station is designed to inspire thought and discussion on the different aspects of children’s rights. Teachers are left with additional materials and tools to promote and facilitate further discussions.
During visits, aspects of children's rights are dealt with such as finding non-violent solutions to problems and the right to every child to a say over his/her own body.
Children learn about how to put the idea of children’s rights into action: What do I do when my rights are infringed upon? How do I respond to someone who does not respect my rights?
The Children’s Rights Mobile Unit is an initiative of the Business Forum for the Child, a coalition of private businesses in Israel working together with and in support of the National Council for the Child. These businesses, headed by Strauss Ice Cream, Inc., have gotten the Mobile Unit rolling by providing financial support and related in-kind services.
After seeing the Mobile Unit in action, Tel-Aviv District Judge, the Honorable Saviona Rotlevi, wrote: "It was an emotional experience for me to see these blessed activities up close, to see what you are doing to convey to young children the first concepts regarding their rights, their status, to the feeling of basic justice and equality between people and to respect them as children and as people…. I have no doubt that this method is the most effective method possible to teach children the basic values of democracy."