“You are never too young to change the world.”

Participation Matters

Children, adolescents and young people across the world are eager to share their creativity, courage and optimism to help change their world for the better. Participation enables you to do just that – in your family, school, college and community life. At the heart of child participation is Article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which upholds every child’s right to be heard.

“You are never too young to change the world.”


In 2012, UNICEF introduced Children4Change for World Children’s Day to recognise the diversity of children in Malaysia and to listen to what they had to say. From the multitude of ideas and opinions children shared, one overarching theme emerged that would do justice to their voices and interests – child participation.

World Children’s Day on 20 November is UNICEF’s annual day of action for children, by children.

5 Reasons Why Participation Matters

Civic engagement prepares you to become problem-solvers
and develops your leadership qualities for now and the future!

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Confident & Empowered

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Respect & Tolerance

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Fresh Ideas & Solutions

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Future Workforce

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Confident & Empowered

Debunking the Myths

Myth 1: Children should be seen and not heard.

Reality: Listening to children and ensuring your views are heard encourages children to understand and respect the views of others. This helps children accept responsibility and become confident, empowered, tolerant and democratic.

Myth 2: Child participation will lead to a lack of respect for adults.

Reality: Participation does not mean children should be disrespectful to adults. In fact, Article 29 of the CRC says that children must respect their parents and other adults. Listening teaches children to respect others and promotes understanding.

Myth 3: Child participation means that everything a child says is correct.

Reality: Participation does not mean that adults automatically accept everything you say. Instead, participation is a process of dialogue which enables adults to provide direction and guidance to help you make the best decisions for your life and others.

Change starts with YOUth

The best way to have an impact on your world is to make change at your local level


Get the facts and
learn about the
cause(s) you’re most
inspired about.

Speak out

and responsibly
to create a better
world for all.


with local NGOs
to improve the
lives of people in
your community.


beliefs, attitudes and
behaviours – yours and
others – to improve lives.


Use your creativity and passion
to create and innovate to
transform people’s lives.

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