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To ensure that every child born in India has a fair start in life and is nurtured in an environment that helps him/her achieve full potential, Unicef on Tuesday launched its #FairStart campaign.

The initiative, through a series of short films that will be disseminated via social media, hopes to change the mindset of people and help remove the inequalities that large groups of children in the country face.

Actor Priyanka Chopra, who is Unicef’s National Ambassador, launched the campaign here.

She said it would be delusional to think that we can end poverty and the disparity that exists when it comes to education, health and gender, but change can be brought about if each individual contributes towards creating a change in their social circle.

“It is the little things that all of us can do that will create a change. Every drop counts to build an ocean,” she said.

The actor added that though there are a number of initiatives by the government and others, there is need for change in the outlook and mindset so that students do not drop out of school and girls are given as fair a chance as boys to become thinking, independent individuals.

“We have become insensitive to inequalities that exist, but if we all think about how we can bring about a change in our own small way, this divide can be bridged.”

Ms. Chopra also cited a personal example of how she found her domestic help’s daughter sitting in her library reading a book during the day instead of being in school. The incident encouraged her to start her own foundation to educate underprivileged children.

Empowering children
The campaign video, made by the children, uses nursery rhymes to showcase the disparity between privileged and underprivileged children, and how they relate to the same nursery rhyme in different ways.

Unicef representative in India Louis-Georges Arsenault said if each individual starts caring, a lot can be done to empower children who have dropped out of school for various reasons and ensure that nobody is left behind.

Ms. Chopra also encouraged the students in the audience to use their privilege of studying in a good school to reach out to those who are not as fortunate and include them in their lives, be it in a game of soccer or in class.

“The youth of the county and the adolescents have the power to make the change so that when they become parents, it is with a mindset that does not discriminate,” she added.


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