What We Do

The World Day of Prayer and Action for Children is celebrated annually on or around 20 November, Universal Children’s Day.

In 2012, the World Day was celebrated through 107 activities in over 60 countries around the world. The World Day was first celebrated in 2008. In 2009, more than 9,000 people in 29 cities in 22 countries participated in the World Day.

The World Day is an opportunity for both prayer and action on behalf of children. It presents an occasion for diverse religious communities and people of faith everywhere, guided by their respective religious teachings and values, to express hope and determination through prayer, meditation and worship that the world be made fit for children.

Multi-faith gatherings can bring together people of different faiths to pray and recommit themselves to working for children’s well-being. Prayers and meditations can be held in places of worship and veneration on a common theme that relates to the well-being of children and protection of their rights.The World Day is an opportunity for civil society, including faith-based organizations and religious leaders, governments and inter-governmental organizations to take common action to stop violence against children.

Action and advocacy undertaken on the World Day is inspired by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. 

Why Participate in the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children?

Participating in a World Day of Prayer and Action can:

  • Raise the profile of the urgent needs of children in your community and region.
  • Achieve greater results for meeting the needs of children.
  • Advance the mission of your organization.

All of the world’s major faith traditions share a common concern for the welfare of children. For interested religious leaders and faith-based organizations participating in a World Day of Prayer and Action can:

  • Advance multi-faith collaboration to achieve tangible results for children.
  • Assemble people of different faiths to re-dedicate themselves to working for children’s well-being.

For interested government and inter-governmental organizations participating in a World Day of Prayer and Action can accelerate and magnify their efforts to help children worldwide.

In many places, faith-based organizations are the best way to reach the most vulnerable populations.

  • Religious leaders are influential moral examples for their communities.
  • Religious communities provide an existing infrastructure for service delivery.
  • Religious leaders and communities can tap existing communication networks to advance child welfare.

Working together, governments, secular and faith-based organizations can have a greater impact on issues affecting child welfare than organizations working alone.

The World Day of Prayer and Action for Children invites all people of faith and good to work together to build a world fit for children. There is space for everyone to contribute. YOU can make a difference!

Supporters of the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children are guided by ethical values and religious teachings, inspired by the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Protecting Children from Violence and Exploitation

Protecting children from violence, exploitation and abuse is essential for protecting their rights to survival, growth and development.

There are 215 million child laborers worldwide and 115 million children suffering the worst, most hazardous, forms of child labor. (ILO)

Around 51 million children born in 2007 have not had their births registered. (UNICEF)