We propose the following REJUVENATE principles as guidelines to facilitate more horizontal collaborative work with children and young people.
We need to understand intergenerational and interdependent relationships.
We need to support children and young people to evolve their ample capacity to contribute ideas and express their opinions on issues relevant to their lives.
Justice – personal and social
We need to shift child rights from an ethic of protection to one of empowerment.
We need to be prepared to think outside the box and recognise the power of less visible champtions or unlikely networks as motivators.
Visual and creative praxis
We need to use flexible different methods, developed with and by children and young people, for genuine participation.
We need to use and develop safe spaces where children and youth can build their confidence, work with their peers and talk with other stakeholders.
Norms – social and institutional
We need to recognise that child rights programmes and processes are inseparable from norms, and engage with all community members to edit or shift norms.
We need to rebuild relationships between people in power and citizens.
We need to use processes that shift social norms, confront power dynamics and build respectful intergenerational dialogue.
We all need the new insights and energy of children and youth.
These principles are underpinned by the Ndoro Ndoro model, where children and youth are positioned at the centre of transformational processes of change, from where they work to shift attitudes of adults and other stakeholders.
We suggest three areas of activity within which these REJUVENATE principles can be used:
- child/youth organising,
- child/youth-centred community approaches,
- and creative praxis.
For in-depth information on the principles, download the Rejuvenate project report here.