It’s Human Rights Day and we have an exciting announcement – the Children’s Commissioner and Scouts Scotland are teaming up to create a new Rights Challenge Badge.
The badge – to be designed by a Scout – will feature a range of activities and resources to raise Scouts’ understanding of their rights and about incorporation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scots law. It will be available for more than 30,000 Scouts Scotland members to complete from Spring 2022.
It will also promote adult leaders’ awareness of children’s rights.
This week, Commissioner Bruce Adamson and two members of our team visited 1st Fordell Firs in Dunfermline to pilot a session for the Rights Challenge Badge. The Scouts each designed their own shield highlighting what’s important in their lives and what rights they would defend. The visit was part of the office roadshow programme to engage with children and young people face-to-face, work that was limited by the pandemic.
Max has been a Scout for nearly two years. The 11-year-old said: “It’s important to have a badge to learn about your rights and for other people to know them too so they can’t take them away from you.”
Anya, 13, has been a Scout for six years. She said: “Rights don’t get talked about enough. Not enough people know that we have extra rights – more than adults. Rights look after you and can support you.”
Family, friendships, learning, equality and having a say featured across many of the individual shields.
Commissioner Bruce said: “We are really excited about working with Scouts Scotland on a Rights Challenge Badge. It will empower Scouts to learn about their rights and will also assist in embedding rights-based practice and knowledge for the adults who support them.
“Scouts will be learning about rights and their roles as human rights defenders in a fun way. The shield activity with 1st Fordell Firs was brilliant and supported important conversations about their experience of rights in their everyday lives. It’s no surprise after the pandemic lockdowns that family, friendships and learning were many of the key rights they wanted to defend. It’s great to be able to work once again with children and young people in their own environments and within their communities as part of our roadshow.”
Callum Holt, Scouts Scotland Commissioner for Community Impact, said: “We’re so delighted to be working alongside the Children’s Commissioner and his team in creating this new badge with our young people! As Scouts, we fundamentally believe in upholding the rights of children and young people and making sure our activities and opportunities support that.
“In our 114-year history we have continuously evolved to make sure we support young people to gain skills for life. Skills that help them to feel confident in taking on the challenges the world presents them with. Proactively educating our members about their rights and how to challenge adults when they feel their rights aren’t being upheld is the next step on this journey.”