The International Day of the African Child is marked every year on June 16th . It was organised or created by the African Union or the then OAU (Organisation of African Unity) to mark a dreadful event that took place in South Africa in 1976. It was initiated in memory of the thousands of black school children in Soweto (South Africa) who, in 1976, took to the streets to protest the inferior quality of their education and to demand their right to be taught in their own language. Hundreds of young boys and girls were shot. In the weeks that followed, more than 100 were killed and more than 1000 were injured.
The sad thing is that free primary education provision for the majority of African children is far from being available especially in the Sub-Saharan region. Especially when it comes to girls. Also it’s one thing to provide education and another to provide quality education. But things are progressing all be it slowly. One of the Millennium Development Goals is to achieve universal primary education. Apparently in Sub-Saharan Africa 42 million children were sent to school between 1999 and 2007. More girls are now being enrolled. However about one fourth of children in the region are not enrolled in school and there is a high drop out rate.
So there is still a long way to go and there are many working hard to achieve that goal in the face of many challenges.
To mark the day, there will be a special screening of the Bino and Fino African educational cartoon in Abuja on Saturday the 18th of June for children and parents to attend. We will also be offering a 40% discount on the Bino and Fino DVD via our website on the 16th of June.