The change was noticed on March 15 in the morning…

Eagle-eyed residents noticed a change in their phone network to ‘ECD Play’ early this morning. ECD stands for ‘Emirati Children’s Day’ – a national occasion celebrated in the UAE on March 15 every year.

The day was first introduced in 2018 and was announced by Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation.

Children’s Right to Play…

Earlier this week, Sharjah launched the ‘Children’s Right to Play’ campaign on social media, coinciding with the day, to educate members of the community about the importance of play for children.

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The campaign held on @sharjahchildfriendly is aimed at encouraging children to share their understanding and experience of playing through posting original creative videos on social media. It is open until the end of March with great prizes up for grabs.

According to Dr Hessa Khalfan Al Ghazal, Executive Director of Sharjah Child Friendly Office, ‘Children’s rights are indivisible; children cannot be given some of their rights and be deprived of others. Play is a fundamental right that every child should enjoy, as it is vital to both psychological and physical development.’

Dr Hessa added that play is also crucial in discovering and unleashing talents and capabilities and gaining essential life skills.

Across the UAE, legislations and regulations have been issued to protect children and raise their awareness about their rights, committees and centres have been set up to report cases of assault on children and much more.

Today, on March 15, the Emirati Children’s Parliament will hold the opening session of its first legislative chapter. The parliament’s establishment reflects the UAE’s keenness to support children and the youth, as well as improve their political awareness, to ensure their active participation in the development process.

Images: Getty and Unsplash