An interview with Silvia about her work for children's rights and her experiences with Victoria's dyslexia. It's from November, but I don't think it's been posted yet.
Some excerpts:What is most important today to ensure the rights of children?
“The UN’s children’s convention is a very important document. What if all the countries of the world could ratify the rights so that children would be protected everywhere and children could be children until they were 18 years old? It isn’t so today. There is much to do in many areas.”What is most important for us in Sverige?
“That we not only have the rights on paper, but have have them in our hearts and really think about the children and their protection needs. It should be natural to think about the children first.”Right now social cuts are happening around Europe as a result of the economic crisis. How do you prevent children’s rights from deteriorating?
“One naturally worries. But I also believe it is important that parents, who are the closest to children, make an effort to protect and be together with their children.
“I have seen that many children have no adult role models and therefore fall into substance abuse. Children need role models and parents must be present for them. This is also a right – the right to a peaceful childhood and to be near their parents, especially in hard times.” Many believe that society has become more callous. Polls from disability organizations show that members feel that societal support has lessened. How does the queen view this development?
“I think everyone has sensed this, in all generations. The debate has always existed, but the reasons have been different.
“What is new is the speed. The world is spinning faster. The Internet is fantastic, but also a major problem. One travels a great deal. Many parents feel that there is insufficient time and they do not have time for their children. One talks about quality time, but it is not possible to gather all the questions that children have, to look after them on a summer holiday. ”How does the queen view the business world’s interest in children’s rights?
“I think many companies have changed their attitudes and perceive their responsibilities. Many have signed codes of conduct to protect children from pedophiles, for example.
Many give their employees the opportunity to become mentors during work hours. It’s good that it is during work hours, so they don’t have to sacrifice their private lives and their own children. It is very generous. Many companies have also done so in Sverige. I think it is wonderful, a nice development. I spoke with a boy and asked him why he had a mentor. ‘It’s cool,’ he replied.
It’s good for young people to have a mentor to talk to. With parents, many questions to be too sensitive, but with another adult, a third party, who listens, asks questions, takes the time, one can build trust . Many continue to be friends after the mentoring is over.”The queen talked about the cause for which the WCYF forum is organized.
“When the UN children’s convention celebrated its 20th anniversary two years ago, we had an excellent opportunity to draw attention to children’s rights. I invited children’s organizations to the palace. It was a fantastic meeting, including Ecpat, Bris, Plan, Childhood and the children’s ombudsman.”
“All were moved by the thought of doing something extra for children’s rights. Everyone set aside their own issues and unanimously agreed to do something together.”
The collaboration resulted in, among other things, brochures on children’s rights sent to 5,400 schools, a book on rights with 200,000 copies, and an audio disc.A few years ago, Crown Princess Victoria talked about her dyslexia in an interview with Föräldrakraft. She said it went well “thanks to Mom keeping an eye on it.” Given these experiences, what does the queen consider the most difficult thing for families who have children with disabilities?
“I think it is the feeling of never being enough. As a parent, you are not an expert. You are facing a situation where you are not in control, regardless of the disability involved.”
“It goes to your heart. You suffer with your child, you want to help but you feel like you do not have enough knowledge. That is why is it so important to have the opportunity to acquire knowledge. Then you can deal with difficulties in a different way. And one can avoid difficult situations for the child.”
“Many children are bullied because of their difficulties. One can avoid this by being knowledgeable and by building the child’s self-esteem. I think this is what affects all parents, that one is not fully prepared.”How did the queen help?
“I tried to become as knowledgeable as I could. But it is also important to talk to anyone who meets the child, such as the teacher, principal, friends, and tell them how it is and how to make things easier for the child. Knowledge, understanding and respect is important.”
The whole interview is in Swedish, but very readable if you use Google Translate.http://www.foraldrakraft....l-som-förälder-är-svårast
Silvia did great with this interview, IMO.
She talked about specific problems and solutions without getting too political - it's a nice medium between empty talk (hello, Mary) and meddling with politics (hello, Charles). And she demonstrated her commitment to the issues without bragging or making it all about her.
The only thing I have a problem with is when she ignored the questions about social cuts and started blabbing about stuff like being busy with the Internet (wtf?). Maybe the questions were too political and she wanted to avoid answering, but she could at least have acknowledged the issue and said something like "I realize people are deeply concerned, but as you know I can't comment on political issues".
But she always comes across as very genuine and passionate when it comes to children's rights. And it sounds like she was devoted to Victoria, even if they didn't always have the best relationship.