Children, Youth and Environments.
Vol 16, No.2 (2006)
This issue is dedicated to
Through this special theme issue, “Pushing the Boundaries: Critical International Perspectives on Child and Youth Participation,” we want to honor the lives and cultivate the legacies of exemplary people whose actions and work have created opportunities for children and youth to make their voices heard on all matters that affect them. Directly and indirectly, the papers published here reflect the invaluable contributions of these individuals. Their perseverance, caring and wisdom charted a path towards acknowledgement of children and youth as human beings in their own right, rather than merely adults-to-be.
Far most of these special people remain nameless to the larger world beyond the local communities where they dedicated their lives to the well-being of young people. Some others have become more widely known. Whether famous or unfamiliar, we celebrate their lives and the inspiration they provide alike. The specific individuals to whom we dedicate this special issue represent them all.
As editors of the journal, we choose to dedicate this global set of papers to Janusz Korczak.1 Dr. Korczak was a Polish pediatrician who, early last century, established two orphanages in which he created a form of governance in which children played key roles. They operated a "parliament," held court, and published a newspaper that was distributed as a supplement to a daily with a circulation of 60,000 copies in 1926.
In 1942, when the Nazis marched off the remaining 200 orphans to Treblinka, Janusz Korczak was given a chance to go free, but chose to stay with the children and perished with them. He was a prolific author, a meticulous observer and researcher, and advocated on behalf of children's rights well before 1924 when the League of Nations adopted the first Declaration of the Rights of the Child in Geneva.
For more information on Janusz Korczak, see http://www.vhec.org/korczak.html and
-- The CYE Editors
1. In separate dedications, the Guest Editors for each of the regions comprising this issue profile individuals whose work has focused on their particular region.