Learning Rights by Living Rights

Riverstone Village provides an environment where children can learn about their rights by living them. They actively exercise their right to Play, and we actively support this in ways they choose, such as our junk-yard playground. They exercise their right to Education in that they are as likely to do reading, maths, science and other activities as they are to do sport, art, and drama activities etc, as well as engaging in social and life-skills, rights and democracy learning that are hard for schools to offer. The children also learn about their rights to Participation by being involved in democratic meetings to help run the project. No child is forced to participate in these activities but many children, especially the older ones, enjoy learning how to chair, take minutes, propose motions, and count votes etc. Conflict is resolved through communication during which children learn conflict resolution techniques as well as enhancing their emotional literacy. They not only learn ‘about’ but also live out and experience their rights to freedom of speech and thought, freedom of association, etc. This also makes for an excellent environment for learning tolerance and respecting the rights of others and in fact we have many different races and religions all interacting together in inclusive spirit. The children also often choose to teach each other and learn how to run activities for other children.

 

Riverstone Village also supports childrens’ right to Participate in the bigger picture by finding ways for children to make their voices heard in the public space. Children are enabled to participate in giving input to other NGO’s, and even Government.