Cooperating with United Nations Agencies

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Arigatou International has supported the work of United Nations agencies such as UNICEF, UNHCR and UNESCO since its beginnings in the early 1990s.

Over the years, the level of cooperation has grown deeper, broader, and even more cooperative. Arigatou International worked closely with UNICEF and UNESCO to develop and publish its flagship Learning to Live Together program, which is now available in 11 languages and used around the world. 

As an international NGO in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and in consultative status with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Arigatou International works closely with the United Nations to influence governments and other key stakeholders to strengthen the protection of children’s rights and contribute to the realization of the Sustainable Development Agenda, focusing especially on the most marginalized and vulnerable children. 

  • In Geneva, this work includes advocating at the Human Rights Council and the Committee on the Rights of the Child, organizing regular side-events during the Human Rights Council Sessions and special briefings for Member States. In Geneva, Arigatou International is also the co-convener of the Working Group on Violence against Children of Child Rights Connect.
  • In New York, Arigatou International is a member of the Multi-faith Advisory Council to the United Nations Interagency Task Force on Religion and Development. Arigatou International advocacy work in New York includes regularly organizing side events during the sessions of United Nations General Assembly as well as at High Level Political Forums.
  • Arigatou International works closely with and supports the mandate of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children, and also collaborates at global, regional, and national levels with UNICEF.
  • Arigatou International collaborates closely with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, particularly supporting the development and implementation of the “Faith for Rights” framework.

We are committed to bringing the voices of children into these spaces and actively facilitating their genuine participation in side-events and consultations as part of our advocacy work at the United Nations.

Unique Contributions to Children’s Rights from People of All Faiths

Arigatou President Addresses United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children

In May 2002, the United Nations General Assembly held the Special Session on Children. The Assembly adopted the “World Fit for Children” outcome document, which charted a course for a global movement that would strengthen international actions for the promotion of children’s rights in the twenty-first century and beyond. Rev. Takeyasu Miyamoto, the convenor of the Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC), was given the honor of addressing the General Assembly, representing the world’s faith-based NGOs. In his remarks, he made three commitments to the international community, which in ensuing years each evolved into a unique global initiative spearheaded by Arigatou International: Ethics Education for Children, the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children, and End Child Poverty.

The Prayer and Action for Children initiative was launched by Arigatou International in 2008 specifically to fulfill the commitment Rev. Miyamoto made when speaking on behalf of people of faith to the United Nations: “We will do our utmost to exercise our leadership and set an example among the people, seeking to generate a universal moral force that will propel implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.”

The full written text of his submitted statement is available via the below link, and the video of his address is available at right.

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