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UN Calls For Action Against Child Labour In Africa

All are invited to join the global movement for children

In 2020, the United Nations declared 2021 the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour.

As we draw nearer to 12 June, the World Day Against Child Labour, millions of children in Africa are still stuck working, sometimes in hazardous conditions?

COVID-19 has worsened the situation. The new Global Estimates on Child Labour, to be released on 12 June, will reflect the latest challenges, as well as opportunities for change.

Here’s what we’ve learned:

  • 160 million children are in child labour worldwide, up from 152 million
  • Since 2016, child labour rose by 16.6 million in sub-Saharan Africa, and child labour is increasingly concentrated in this region

It’s time for change.

More than 300 global stakeholders, including the governments of Somalia, Ghana, Lesotho, Sierra Leone, and Eswatini, have made 2021 Action Pledges. These practical plans outline the steps each stakeholder will take toward ending child labour this year.

African celebrities are doing their part. Samuel Eto’o, FUL, Lokua Kanza, among others, have already raised their voices for children

Embed link for Eto’o Instagram video  

2011-03-30, little children in uniform attending the J.N Kambarage Academy primary School in Suba (Kenya). Credit photo : Marcel Crozet / ILO

And individuals are, too! Anyone can join the global campaign to make a difference for children.

People across Africa and around the globe are sharing their childhood photos with this caption:

“As a kid, I wanted to become ________. I’m sharing this photo to support the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, because I believe kids should dream now and work later. I challenge @(tag Name 1), @(Name 2), @(Name 3) to do the same 😊 #EndChildLabour2021”

Working together, individuals have the power to transform the International Year into a sustained global movement for all over Africa.

Visit to learn more.

Alexa Wybraniec and Momo Bertrand are part of the United Nations ITCILO team working on the International Year To Eliminate Child Labour.

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