World Children’s Day was first established in 1954 to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improve children's welfare.
Today, on World Children’s Day we caught up with peadiatric doctor and mother Sarah Arachchi about the importance of our children and their welfare.
Dr Sarah Arachchi remembers loving kids since she was a teenager and that was why she decided to go into paediatrics.
“Kids are super fun, resilient, and great to look after. I also loved working with families and with other healthcare professionals from multidisciplinary backgrounds. Being a paediatrician involves a lot of teamwork, patience, and understanding. It is also extremely rewarding.”
Living in Melbourne, the ‘Culture Capital’ of Australia, she spends her days off with family and enjoying the cuisine.
“I love hanging out with my kids, family, and also friends as well as going out to restaurants (hooray we are open Melbourne!), cooking, and baking.”
Although Dr Arachchi loves her work she says it doesn’t come without its challenges.
“Things like taking blood from a baby or young toddler is not always easy. It is heartbreaking at times but overall an amazing feeling to look after kids and their families.”
We asked Dr Arachchi for some advice on how we can be more aware of our children not only on this worldwide day, but also every day of the year.
World Children’s Day is celebrated on 20 November each year. As a paediatrician, how do you feel about this cause? and how important is it for the world to start thinking about its children?
Children are the cornerstone for our future. I try to learn things from my own patients as kids can teach us so many things about the world.
I love that kids see the world through play and often their imagination is so vivid and reminds us to live every minute instead of worrying about the future.
Not all children are lucky to have a safe home and family and it is important that we look out for all kids and advocate for them.
I did a project in year 9 which I chose to do on children vs the world. I still have it tucked away in a cupboard. In that folder, I had collated poems from different children all around the world including Anne Franke.
One of my favourite quotes from her is, “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
This illustrates the importance of not taking for granted what children want or what they dream about.
We were all children once. It’s important not to forget our own hopes and dreams at such a young age.
I feel like that project really have me insight into how children think and further fuelled my passion to pursue paediatrics one day.
On world children's day, what are some things parents could do to attend to the well-being of their children?
Read stories to them. Be there with them. Play with them. Be kind and listen to them. Say yes. Learn something from their kids.
Would you have any advice on how we globally can improve children's welfare? Do you think days like this help?
We need to teach children kindness. Kindness towards one another and to respect people from all backgrounds and nationalities.
We should always look out for kids (even if they are not our own) and allow them to hope and dream about the future.
Kids are the backbone of our future.
It’s so important that we care for and nurture them as they will be the leaders of tomorrow.