On Saturday June 20, a BRAVO assembly (Birth Registration for All Versus Oblivion), was held at the DREAM centre in Conakry. BRAVO is a programme which the Community of Sant’Egidio is organising to promote the registration of all children whose births have not yet been officially recorded, a situation which leaves these children open to the risk of becoming ‘invisible’.
The activists had prepared the meeting in the previous months by explaining the importance of registering their child’s birth to all the patients during their pregnancy at the centre. They also found more than 100 older children whose births had not yet been registered and invited the parents of these children to the meeting.
After all DREAM’s efforts for babies to be born healthy with the vertical prevention programme these children also need to have their right to exist recognised by the State if they are to become fully-fledged citizens. In a reality in which the State often seems absent (even central areas of Conakry lack water and electricity) it is instead important to understand that registering a child’s birth means giving them protection and guaranteeing their future – their rights to an education, healthcare, documents and, why not, the possibility of travelling to visit other countries in the future.
The details of about 40 children plus those of their older siblings were gathered from the parents who attended the meeting and activists are now preparing the documents necessary to register this first group of minors at the registry office.