Communication with Children and Young People




Introduction. 3

Major challenges facing children today. 3

Efforts to safeguard children. 3

Conclusion. 4

References. 5





Rights of young people are stipulated for the reasons that are not able to defend themselves as adults. Several states and the United Nations have taken steps to legalise and enforce basic rights of all children to guarantee future survival. The essay is based on basic rights that are supposed to be provided to children and efforts made by various governments and international bodies to ensure they are realised. Some of the issues that are considered necessary to be pursued as a result include refugees, subjection to forced labour, physical abuse, exposure to hazardous substances, sexual violence, recruitment and child soldiers and arbitrary detention by police officers. Other common abuses include sexual abuse and trafficking, lack of education and abandonment of orphans or parents.

Major challenges facing children today

Problems facing children seem to depend on where a child is located on the globe. Children in the developing countries have different problems from those in developing countries though they are all required to enjoy similar rights. However, the effects of these problems seem to converge at later stage in life, some fail to achieve their full potential in life. According to Struass (2013), the biggest problem facing children in America is poverty. Children are the poorest members of the society and as such, they are likely to lead life with less opportunities in future. In the UK, there could be as many as 2.3 million children living in poverty (BBC, 2015). In tackling some of these challenges, children need to be involved and communication need to be with them to educate them on how to stay safe.

Efforts to safeguard children

In the US, several solutions that have been mooted to solve crises posed by child poverty in the country. Some that have been advocated in the UK include use of health aids such as Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and food supplementation. Though seem to address specific issues of health, there is not much that is talked about conditions of sustained poverty. In the UK where one in six is falls below the federal poverty line, country councils are used to handle cases where individuals too poor to provide for their children. The council takes over welfare of those children and in 2013-14, more than 650,000 were referred to the council (HM Government, 2015). These children are protected from a number of risks and they are handled by professionals that include a range of issues from health to academic. The solution may be working well but this is limited to developed regions where governments have resources to meet the needs of the few poor people. In least developed countries where countries where percentage of people below absolute poverty line are many, it may not be sustainable. As was mentioned above, poverty is a conduit to many other ills that affect children including lack of access to education, exposure to hazardous chemicals and providing labour in farms as part of family duty when they should be in schools. While doing so, council official need to communicate with the children on what their rights are and how to exploit available opportunities available to them.

The UK government published “Every Child Matters” Green Paper that outlined several issues that were targeted for children, among them being the need to be health, stay safe, enjoy and achieve, make a positive contribution and achieve economic wellbeing (HM Government, 2015). These was a comprehensive list that addresses common issues affecting children in the country. The Children’s Act 2004 serves as the basis for policies to protect and safeguard children’s welfare. Some the issues that were mentioned include protecting them from maltreatment, impairment of health, ensuring they are safe and well protected and tacking active steps to ensure their potential is fully exploited. The essence of this is to ensure they are well protected and are guided by professionals in any of the areas mentioned. Being a wide issue, it means there is need for multiagency cooperation to achieve this central objective.  This includes teachers, health professionals, mentors, social workers among others. All these need to collaborate and involve children on how best their rights are to be provided to meet their needs.

Perhaps one of the most issues that is hardly taken seriously is giving children a voice to say what they want. This happens because of possible immature mind that may be irrational. The Children Act 1989 provided that children’s wishes be granted when undertaking decision on what needs to be done on them. This may include custodian issues where their preference may be needed in who they need to stay with. Equality issues are also needed on providing welfare of children but children also need to be trained to identify areas where they feel inadequate in meeting their needs. Movement of children in adoption cases is noted as one the areas where preference of children need to be considered. The British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) has been used to express wishes of children that wish to be adopted for the new families to oblige (Barnett, 2005).

The government ensures children are not discriminated against and this is enshrined in Equality Acts 2010. The laws may be clear and well-intended but implemented of the same fail to meet the end. In the current interconnected world, there is even more that needs to be done especially exposure to internet where they access materials not intended for their age. Issues of cybercrimes such as bullying are considered under the umbrella, Children Rights Alliance for England. Their privacy is threatened and some use it excessively in gaming, chatting thus negatively influencing their mental health (CRAE, 2014). Parents are made aware of this reality and make steps to protect their children. Sometimes, it may not be possible to prevent children from the interne where they are exposed to unwanted materials. Parents and teachers that spend most time with children may be the most appropriate instruments to communicate to children on the need to stay safe from harmful websites. Where possible, communication need to be with them rather than to them only for them to make sense of importance of message meant for them. Children need accessible role models that will communicate to them on values to be observed.

Like the internet, children are exposed to food materials that they may not be aware of potential risks posed. These risks may have long term effects and beside officials from the government educating them, parents need to direct children on what is safe to them. Informing them on the need to exercise, reduce consumption unhealthy foods may help them to make better choices in life. Communication is a step towards improving their health.


Children rights have been identified in various governmental and nongovernmental organisations globally with different needs outlined. Whereas they are mentioned, not much can be said of progress that has been made to achieve intended goal in many parts of the globe and especially in developing countries. In the UK, several actors that include medical, teaches, social workers, the police and parents are required to work as collaborators towards safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children. This means they must communicate with each other and include children on what they want in providing these rights.




Barnett, D., 2005. Profiling children on the internet : a good practice guide.. [Online]
Available at: 19
[Accessed October 2016 2014].

BBC, 2015. UK has 2.3m children living in poverty, government says. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 17 September 2016].

CRAE, 2014. Children’s rights and their online and digital interactions: briefing ahead of Baroness Kidron’s debate, 20th Novemb. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 19 October 2016].

HM Government, 2015. Working together to safeguard children. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 19 October 2016].

HM Government, 2015. Working Together to Safeguard Children. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 18 October 2016].

Strauss, V., 2013. The most important problem facing American children today. [Online]
Available at:






£ 10 .00