Human Rights Day: How one company is improving access to education for vulnerable children
December 10 marks International Human Rights Day when in 1948, following the Second World War, the United Nations unanimously adopted a charter of 30 articles to promote justice, security, and equality for all. The international community came together and vowed to never again allow such atrocities and complemented the UN Charter with a road map to guarantee the rights of everyone, everywhere. This document later became the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Today, protracted crises, extremism, political uncertainty, and forced migration continue to threaten human rights.
The Declaration of Human Rights is one of the most translated documents around the world, written in over 464 languages, and has served as the foundation for various treaties, conventions and reforms, including the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
Child Rights are Human Rights
Signed in 1989, the Convention affirms that every child has rights, whatever their ethnicity, gender, religion, language, abilities or any other status – including the right to an education. The UNCRC is the most ratified human rights treaty and all UN member states, except for the United States, have ratified the Convention. Research shows that upholding the rights of children, especially education, is crucial to any society’s progress – whether reducing poverty, boosting economic growth, promoting peace, and decreasing vulnerability. But sadly, the nearly universal acceptance of the Convention does not ensure that these rights are upheld.
Today, an unprecedented 65.3 million people around the world have been forced to flee their homes due to conflict or disaster – the highest number of refugees and displaced persons since the Second World War. Over half of all refugees are children.
Though Sustainable Development Goal 4 aims to ensure inclusive and equitable education for all, in developing countries such as Pakistan, access to quality education remains a continuous challenge. UNICEF estimates that 9.4 million primary school-aged children are out of formal education in Pakistan. Across the world, access to quality education remains a challenge and 124 million children do not go to school.
From Rights to Results
As a family company, NRS International feels a personal commitment to education. Since the onset of the school year, beginning in August 2016, NRS has funded over $40,000 to education and youth programs in Pakistan. Additionally, we have acquired a new public school that we plan to renovate for expanded student enrollment. Our projects include scholarships, sports, Model United Nations, and community engagement. But these projects are only one way, one company is working to give children access to education, opportunities to play, and space to develop.
During this year’s UN General Assembly, UN Special Envoy for Global Education, Gordon Brown noted that by 2030, “if without adequate invention, 800 million of the 1.6 billion children of the world would leave their be education without sufficient qualifications.” In order for this gap to be bridged and the next generation to flourish, al stakeholders – including the private sector – must continue to stand for children’s rights and access to quality education.
Human Rights Day calls on all of us to take action for another’s rights. You and your company can stand for the right to education for some of the world’s most vulnerable children by signing this petition.
NRS International is a family-run company that manufactures and develops products for the humanitarian, public health and development sectors. Responding to the growing demands of vulnerable populations, we aim to improve the lives of people in need by providing innovative, high quality and cost-effective aid essentials. Headquartered in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, we are the parent company to NRS Relief, TANA Netting, Ulinzi Latex, NRS Enlight and the Bilqees Sarwar Foundation.
Ms. Nicole Malick is an international social worker recognized for her ability to effectively design and lead programs that address sustainability, gender equality, peacebuilding, and human trafficking. Nicole’s eleven years of international experience, spans the Middle East, Asia, and East Africa with governments, civil society organizations and multi-national companies, most notably USAID and Her Royal Highness Princes Basma’s youth centers. Ms. Malick is a Board Member of Protect The People, a Washington DC based non-profit, that empowers people affected by crisis. Through her current role with NRS International, she serves as a Steering Committee Member for UAE UN Global Compact.
She is a recipient of two USAID Meritorious Honors Awards, a U.S. Department of State Meritorious Group Award, and received a service medal from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) for her work in Afghanistan. She was nominated as an official Mentor for the National Network for Social Work Management for her commitment to international social work. Nicole holds a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Administration of Criminal Justice and Psychology and a Masters in Social Worker. Nicole holds a license of social worker in New Jersey, US.