Children on the Edge is a Child Rights organisation, but what does that mean? What does a child rights organisation do?
There are many different types of child rights organisations, in the UK and around the world. Each will have its own focus and area of expertise, but all will be dedicated to ensuring that all children are able to realise their rights - from the right to food and housing, to protection from abuse, to education, or to freedom of expression, amongst others.
Some child rights organisations work directly with affected communities by providing services like education or healthcare. Others focus on campaigning, advocacy and lobbying to influence policies around the rights of children, by tackling issues like child marriage or promoting gender equality.
Children on the Edge is a child rights organisation created to support the world’s most marginalised children. We currently work with more than 20,000 children in Bangladesh, India, Uganda, Myanmar, and Lebanon.
What does Children on the Edge do?
Every child has the right to be free and to thrive according to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) - but we know that children in marginalised communities often face abuse, exploitation, exclusion, neglect and even death; and their plight is often seen to be too challenging to tackle.
Our mission is to create conditions in which every marginalised child can flourish and thrive no matter where they live and irrespective of the challenging circumstances they face. We place children at the heart of everything we do by working hand-in-hand with local communities to restore hope, dignity, and justice; and to actively involve everyone in creating transformation.
By working alongside communities, we design programs tailored to their specific needs and circumstances using our 30 years of experience. This has enabled us to transform the lives of children facing some of the most challenging circumstances, by co-creating protective, nurturing environments in which they can safely live, play, learn, and grow.
When we began, in 1990, the children on the edge we served were those incarcerated and forgotten in Romanian orphanages. Today, the “edge” takes us into refugee camps, slums, and warzones where we support Rohingya, Congolese, and Syrian refugee children, and those facing internal displacement, caste discrimination, poverty, and exploitation.
The geography and circumstances may be different tomorrow, but we’re always ready to go — by invitation only— into marginalised communities where children are affected by poverty, displacement, conflict, and persecution. By creating protective environments that generate hope, life, colour and fun, we enable children to realise their rights.
Our Child Rights Approach
Children on the Edge has a rights-based approach in all the work that we do. Our approach is holistic, multi-layered, and guided by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). This convention is a promise, made in 1989, by governments across the world, to do everything in their power to protect and promote children’s rights to survive and thrive, to learn and grow, to make their voices heard and to reach their full potential.
We place children centre stage by encouraging them to know their worth, to understand their rights, and to be active agents in shaping their own futures.
Our experience working in exceptionally challenging circumstances has taught us to be agile in our approach, to listen, and to help design programs according to specific needs by working hand-in-hand with local communities. In this way, we reignite in children determination to live better lives in the present and hope for an even brighter future.
We exist to support the world’s most marginalised children. Working hand-in-hand with communities, we transform the lives of children living in some of the toughest situations by creating safe spaces in which they can live, play, learn, and grow.
We are proud of our child rights approach and our ability to tailor solutions based on the specific needs of each community we work with. This includes nurturing positive parenting and early childhood development, creating play and educational opportunities, and presenting an array of community transformation initiatives.
What Impact do we have?
Through our work, we enable children to realise their rights and thrive. In every place that we work, we ensure that all children can learn, grow and play in safe, colourful spaces; whether that is in preschool classrooms, learning centres, school buildings, or out in the communities where they live.
Our work transforms communities and ensures that children are able to flourish. We watch children grow in confidence and develop hope for the future. We see parents develop positive and healthy relationships with their children. We watch communities transform, becoming cleaner and safer. We see communities advocate for their rights and work together to support each other.
Read about our impact in our latest Annual Report >>
Hope - We believe in cultivating hope as a catalyst for change; a gritty, determined, can-do kind of hope. When marginalised communities actively identify their problems and take charge of solutions, a renewed sense of hope and self-belief restores their motivation and ability to transform their own lives.
Dignity - We treat everyone with the dignity they deserve. We have witnessed that people who are pushed to the edge of society, overlooked, or told they are worthless often start to believe it. We’re a trusted ally working to restore each individual’s sense of self-worth by recognising and realising their inherent value, freedom, and equality.
Justice - According to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), every child has rights - and yet, these are rarely realised for children living on the edge. We want to ensure every in the child’s environment is aware of and committed to respecting these universal rights.
Freedom of Expression - All children should feel free to express themselves and have opportunities to safely chatter, play, dance, paint, and create. They should have the opportunity to discover who they are, decide who they want to be, and to grow into vibrant, animated, unhindered individuals able to speak for themselves and be heard.
We reflect our values of hope, dignity, justice and freedom of expression in everything we do and with everyone we work with. From the children we serve to our partners, staff, volunteers, and donors, we are consistent in our approach.
Why Support Children on the Edge as a Child Rights Organisation?
Children on the Edge rely entirely on donations from our amazing community of supporters to fund our vital work that supports over 20,000 children around the world.
We’re a small child rights organisation with a big reach and we are so grateful for every penny that we receive. We are committed to spending it where the need is greatest.
On average, for every pound that is spent on Children on the Edge, 86p goes towards our programmes, and the rest covers our fundraising costs to bring in a sustainable, steady stream of income to keep them running smoothly, along with all our UK office overheads.
You can be assured that your donation goes a long way to make a difference. Your support transforms lives.
If you're interested in learning more about our work as a child rights organisation, read more about what we do here >