20 December 2019

Advancing multi-stakeholder efforts to combat child labour in cocoa

Group photo of participants at the meeting

On November 15th, experts met in Accra, Ghana to discuss how different stakeholders, including the national governments, representatives from the cocoa and chocolate industry, United Nations organizations and civil society, can work together in the future to better tackle child labour in the cocoa sector.

The objective of the meeting was to look at priorities for a possible new public-private partnership to accelerate progress towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8.7, which calls for the elimination of all forms of child labour by 2025.

Opening remarks from Nick Weatherill, Executive Director of ICI, the Honourable Minister Baffour-Awuah and Dr Martin N’Guettia, representatives of the governments of Ghana and the Côte d’Ivoire respectively, highlighted the importance of scaling up activities and building on past experiences, in addition to the need for new, strengthened ways of working together.

Representative from ILO-Geneva, Francesco D’Ovidio, and Anne-Claire Dufay from UNICEF-Ghana underlined the importance of a systems approach to ensure sustainability and accelerate progress. Virginie Mahin of Mondelez speaking on behalf of industry, underlined the commitment of industry to strengthened collaboration.

During the meeting, participants focused on two topics (out of the four proposed within the public-private partnership) – child protection and quality education – and explored how the different players could work together in these areas to scale up efforts to eliminate child labour in the sector.

For example, participants discussed how to better ensure information is shared around civil society and industry child protection systems and how the different players could work together to improve school infrastructure. For more information on the discussions during the meeting, please see the meeting report.

These discussions will feed into the development of the possible new public-private partnership that is currently being shaped by national working groups in both Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire and four technical workstreams that focus on the four pillars of the partnership – poverty, child protection, quality education and child survival.

The meeting was held alongside the ICI Board Meeting in Accra.

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