The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is part of Norwegian law. It makes it clear that children have their own rights, including the right to leisure time. Children shall be given the opportunity to participate in sport based on their own needs and wishes. This will also give them a feeling of being part of a community where they can make new friends and develop a sense of cultural belonging and identity through participation.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child has been included in Norwegian law since 2003. It’s also called the children’s constitution. The convention makes it clear that children have their own rights. Naturally, this involves the right to leisure time, which is addressed in Article 31 of the convention. The model for children’s sport in Norway recognises the child as an independent individual and ensures they are given the opportunity to participate in sport based on their own needs and wishes.
An active and meaningful recreation helps with human development. For children and young people, arenas for leisure and recreation are often places to make friends, become part of a community and develop a sense of cultural belonging and identity through participation. All children should have the opportunity to participate in such arenas.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is designed to ensure that children have what they need to be happy regardless of who they are or where they come from. Every child has the right to play, rest and leisure. This right must apply irrespective of the background, living arrangements or occupation of their parents or guardian. Our common social responsibility is to ensure that all children get the opportunity to participate in activities involving sport, music, dance, drama or other desired recreation activity.
Children must have good conditions for growing up and it’s impossible to put this into words or numbers. Recreational activities play an important role in this. Consequently, we must do all we can to ensure that all children have the same opportunities.