The international children’s rights organization KidsRights has today awarded the International Children’s Peace Prize to Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (16) and Divina Maloum (14) from Cameroon. The prize will be awarded on 20 November in The Hague on the occasion of World Children’s Day. The two winners were selected from 137 candidates from 56 countries.
Divina Maloum founded Children for Peace (C4P) in Cameroon to prevent children from being recruited for armed groups in Cameroon. The country has been the target of terrorist attacks since 2014. C4P’s network now covers about 100 children all over Cameroon.
“It enables them to promote change and encourages them to participate in peace initiatives in their communities. It has organized an inter-community children’s peace camp, set up peace clubs in mosques and, together with other children, made a declaration against violent extremism,” says KidsRights.
According to the organization, Greta Thunberg is a role model for young people’s international climate activism. In the summer of 2018, she was on strike every week for the climate in the Swedish parliament. Since then, Thunberg has become the face of an international climate movement.
The International Children’s Peace Prize is awarded every year to a child who bravely fights for children’s rights. South African archbishop Desmond Tutu has been the official godfather of the prize for ten years.
“I have great admiration for you. Your compelling message is reinforced by the energy of your youth and your firm conviction that children have the ability, if not the duty, to improve their future,” he responded.