National Patron and Ambassadors Messages

National Patron of the Children’s Week Council of Australia

His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd) Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia

Children’s Week (23-31 October) is one of the most joyous weeks on our national calendar – a time for us to celebrate the wonderment of children and the myriad of ways they enrich our lives.

The Children’s Week Council of Australia and its state and territory affiliates have organised for a range of events and activities to be held around the country during the Week. I encourage anyone interested in participating to look at the Children’s Week website.

There is, however, a serious side to Children’s Week, and that is child safety. The impact of the pandemic has meant that, for many children, the only way to engage with friends is online. Every child, no matter the circumstances, has a right to feel safe. This year’s theme, ‘Children have the right to choose their own friends and safely connect with others’, reflects this reality. All of us have a responsibility to ensure our children are safe and feel loved.

As Patron of the Children’s Week Council of Australia I want to commend the Council for its strong advocacy on behalf of children. My thanks to all at the Council for the critically important work that you do.

fairy-queen-caroline(1)Ambassador for Children’s Week WA

Fairy Queen Caroline

I am so proud to act as Ambassador for Western Australia’s Children’s Week and to be able to spread the message of celebration along with my fairy dust to the many children I meet in the community.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child points to each child’s right to play as an integral part of their education. In today’s world of hectic schedules, economic stress and deadlines, children can be swept along in an adult world without having time to play. Fantasy and imaginative play, role play, discovery play, games and sport are all essential learning experiences that nurture and enable a child to grow to reach their full potential.

During Children’s Week let us remind ourselves of the value of play and the importance of allowing children to be children. By taking time and allowing ourselves to play with our children we can acknowledge their world and can re-emerge from it having thoroughly enjoyed the experience!

I hope that children and families from all over Western Australia join me at Whiteman Park on Sunday 24 October for the Official Children’s Week Opening event Go for 2 & 5 Family Fun Day activities. Bring your friends and come along, there’s fun for everyone – lots to see and things to do, in celebration of you!

commission of children and young people colin pettit gives a foreword for childrens week wa 2020

Commissioner for Children and Young People WA

Colin Pettit

There are 598,000 children and young people in Western Australia – almost a quarter of the population – and every year, Children’s Week is a special opportunity to recognise and celebrate these important citizens in our society.

Over the last year I had the pleasure of meeting with thousands of students in schools across the state as they shared their views in my Speaking Out Survey. Hearing how they all saw their wellbeing, and what they thought was most important in their lives, was a reminder of what defines growing up well – feeling loved, healthy and safe.

While we celebrate Children’s Week for just one week, I encourage that we as adults, in the community, in business and in government, consider the impact of our decision-making on children and young people at all times, in all weeks of the year. In particular, we need to focus on improving the lives of our most vulnerable children and young people.

The festivities arranged by Meerilinga are a great way to uphold the rights and contributions of WA’s youngest, and I’m honoured to show my support.