April 16th, 2018

The Day of the African Child 2018 will be commemorated on the theme “Leave No Child Behind for Africa’s Development.” This year’s DAC theme builds on the momentum created by the DAC 2017 theme “The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development for Children in Africa: Accelerating Protection, Empowerment and Equal Opportunity.” It does so by emphasising the need to mainstream children’s rights in all (Agenda 2030) developmental programmes implemented by Member States. While the 2017 DAC theme focused on locating Africa’s children generally within the 2030 Agenda, the 2018 theme highlights the need to ensure that ‘NO CHILD IS LEFT BEHIND’ by specifically targeting those who are not benefitting from Africa’s growth and development. Thus, the overarching principle is inclusive development for children, that is, whenever undertaking to develop programs and policies for implementing Agenda 2030, children should be at the centre-stage and Member States should ‘ensure that no child is left behind’ in the drive towards sustainable economic development. This is particularly important in the African context where children form the majority of Africa’s population. Member States therefore need to focus on this group when working towards achieving the SDGs.