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Home NATIONALRovaniemi to seek UNICEF recognition as a child-friendly city
Sun, 31 May, 2015 12:07:23 AM
FTimes Report by Antti Karjala, May 31
File Photo – Lehtikuva.
The city of Rovaniemi together with some other municipalities is reaching for UNICEF recognition of being a child-friendly city.
UNICEF child-friendly city program is based on an international agreement on children's rights made by the United Nations.
The goal is to improve partaking by the youngest and to plan stimulus-invoking activities such as the possibility to play and to have hobbies. Part of the plan is to provide a safe environment in daily life for children. 
Starting from day care, children will be introduced to needed daily life skills such as decision making, listening to others and taking part in a community. Children will be also introduced to their environment where they will learn through drawing, painting, story-telling and theatre.
For older children and teenagers, there will be also activities involving decision-making and taking part in student union and youth council. Another vital issue for the young will be future and career planning workshops.
"There is a mutual grid between the cities that take part in this project and meetings can be organised on demand," said Anne Luiro, a senior adviser to the cultural and educational department of the city of Rovaniemi. 
"This year's shared endeavor is to estimate effects on children which will be addressed in a local workshop."
Anne Luiro said, "Each and every municipality that is partaking in the project is emerging from its own basis. This means that there is no comparison between municipalities when it comes to UNICEF recognition."
Asked about the workshops for the project to get started, Luiro said, "We have already had our action plan-based workshop that we have now continued to work on. The young have given us ideas on how to both keep them aware of our progress status and also involve them in our efforts."
"The effects on children are to be evaluated in all matters regarding children and the young; the goal is to get reachability for children's voice in basic actions so that the feeling of participation is felt by children of all age," Luiro said.
"Children should be given attention in all situations but one concrete example of taking into account of children's opinion that comes to my mind is when schools or day care centers are built.  The opinion and ideas on multi-purpose use of these kind of facilities can greatly differ between the children and adults."
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