Virtual Discussion on “Adolescents in Pandemic” to Celebrate National Children's Day


Virtual Discussion on “Adolescents in Pandemic” to Celebrate National Children's Day

National Integrated Adolescent Girls Forum organized a virtual discussion on “Adolescents in pandemic” to celebrate this year's National Children’s day. Over 150 participants from all 7 provinces participated in the discussion organized on the occasion. The forum organized the discussion with the support of CWIN Nepal and PLAN International Nepal.

Pawan Rai from Khotang, Province 1, Punam Kumari Patel from Rautahat, Province 2, Mandira Shrestha from Lalitpur, Province 3, Mahendra Acharya from Myagdi, Gandaki Province. Manju Thapa Magar from Province-5, Punam Pun from Karnali Province and Dhansara Bhandari from Far-western Province were the key speakers. Representatives from SOS village in Sano Thimi also participated in the discussion. The speakers shed light on their personal and communities' struggle in coping up with the difficult situation caused by COVID 19. All the speakers expressed deep concern on the infringement of children rights during COVID pandemic.

Sagoon Bhetwal and Sajju Maharjan representing the National College of Social Sciences, preformed slam poetry concerning various aspects of child rights while the adolescent girls from Balika Peace Home, CWIN sang a song resounding with the message that Child rights are the concern of everyone.

In the discussion, concerns were raised about the safety of the LGBTQIA community in different parts of Nepal. The participants showed fear over the rise in mental health problems in children, caused by prolonged hours of time spent in front of gadgets. Increase in the cases of sexual abuse was also brought to light during the conference.

This year, the national children's day was celebrated different than in the past years due to the restriction in travelling and gathering to prevent the spreading of the CORONA virus. But the gathering was still very fruitful and participatory even though it was conducted virtually.. The program was led, facilitated and participated by the adolescents. The new situation has come as a new opportunity for adolescents to learn to use new available technical tools and to use virtual media to meet and discuss the issues with the peer. The discussion on a new virtual platform also paved the way for the adolescents to meet and discuss on the concerning issues again, whenever needed.