Two Dutch children nominated for International Children’s Peace Prize 2017

Thursday, September 21, 2017 - 06:00

International children’s rights NGO the KidsRights Foundation proudly announces a record number of 169 nominees for the International Children’s Peace Prize 2017. The internationally acclaimed prize is awarded annually to a child who fights courageously to promote the rights of the child. The originally Dutch initiative has become a global phenomenon. Submissions from no less than 55 countries were entered this year, which marks a second record achievement for 2017. KidsRights will announce the three finalists on 15 November. In line with tradition, the prize will be awarded by a Nobel Peace Laureate in the presence of the world press on 4 December during a ceremony in the renowned Hall of Knights in international city of peace and justice The Hague, the Netherlands.

KidsRights founder Marc Dullaert: “It is very encouraging that so many children across the globe dare to stand up for the rights of other children and bring about change in their own communities, cities or countries. Children can be true changemakers and set the world in motion.”

Two Dutch nominees
For the first time in the history of the prize there are two nominees from the Netherlands, Fahima Elmi (15) and Gabriël Gomes Barros (17). As a child, Fahima moved to a women’s shelter with her mother, brother and sister. As with many peers who face similar circumstances, Fahima experienced traumatic events. She has since become a devoted advocate for the improvement of living conditions for children in shelters. She has contributed to a recent ruling by Dutch parliament that children must henceforth be treated as independent clients. Care previously focused on the parents who brought children along to shelters.

Gabriël was moved into an orphanage at a young age and as such had to deal with various Dutch relief agencies. He now uses his experiences in his daily work to improve the fates of peers facing similar circumstances. Gabriël recently completed training which allows him to counsel youth care children as an experience expert. He also fights for a greater voice for children in decision making. Gabriël participates in conferences of the Council of Europe and is a member of the children’s council of a Dutch youth care organization. His dream is to become Children’s Ombudsman.

Global platform for inspiring changemakers
The International Children’s Peace Prize will be held for the 13th consecutive year. Every year, the message of the new young winner has tremendous impact. But the other nominees, too, demonstrate to millions globally that change is possible. KidsRights offers the nominees an international platform on which they can better spread their message and continue their important work. We invite one and all to visit our website to read more about these brave changemakers and ways to support their tireless work: www.kidsrights.org/nominees.