According to UNICEF estimation, there are currently 150 million children engaged in labour around the world. These children grow up without an education and into a life of poverty, and more than half work in hazardous and harmful conditions.
To mark the upcoming Day Against Child Labour (on the 12th of June) and its arrival in the UK, revolutionary social enterprise movement – Child Labor Free – is working with acclaimed London street artists to create a bold installation that will highlight the tough issue of child labour. SMart is a strong supporter of what they do.
The Child Labor Free story
Founded by two education entrepreneurs with the vision of creating a world free from child labour, Child Labor Free started life in New Zealand on World Day Against Child Labour on 12 June 2015. A year on, and they have certified eight local brands and announced a further 10 as being on the journey towards becoming Child Labor Free.
That Child Labor Free is launching in the UK in 2016 is significant because this is the year the International Labour Organization set as the target for eradicating the worst forms of child labour. Despite significant efforts from governments, NGO’s and organisations including Child Labor Free, this huge goal has not yet been reached. Child Labor Free is passionate that stakeholders need to work together alongside brands and consumers to do more to ensure that they are not supporting the practice.
“Whether you’re a vintage clothes addict, buy only organic vegetables, are devoted to environmentally friendly cleaning products, or none of the above, you need to be questioning if child labour was used in the supply chains of the products you consume,” says Child Labor Free CEO, Nik Webb-Shephard.
The street artists
Mexican born Victoria was chosen for her sensitivity to the child labour topic, which is a significant problem in her home country, whilst it was Zabou’s reputation for playing on stereotypes which caught Child Labor Free’s attention.
The street art, which aims to engage and motivate Londoners to say no to #allworknoplay will be visible on Great Eastern Road, Shoreditch from 7th to 19th of June 2016.
Limited edition graffiti art t-shirts (RRP £20.00) made by fair-trade and organic t-shirt business Freeset are available to buy on Child Labor Free website. Proceeds will fund the development of a Child Labor Free Foundation early learning centre in Kolkata, India.