What is Children’s Week?

Children’s Week is an annual event celebrated around Universal Children’s Day, designated in Australia as the fourth Wednesday in October. 

Children’s Week celebrates the right of children to enjoy childhood. It is also a time for children to demonstrate their talents, skills and abilities. A diverse range of events and activities are organised at National, State and Local levels. These focus the attention of the wider community on children, their needs and achievements.

Thousands of children and their families around the country are involved in activities and events during Children’s Week through the participation of schools, playgroups, childcare, kindergartens, cultural groups, libraries, government departments and community groups. Programs and activities are open to all children regardless of race, colour, sex, ability,

ACT Children’s Week

ACT Children’s Week Committee

The Committee is made up of community volunteers and representatives from various organisations and government agencies who are committed to the aims of Children’s Week. Committee members meet monthly, in person or via ZOOM. Committee membership is open to anyone who is interested in furthering the well being of our young people in the ACT.  We welcome new members and would love to hear from you if you are  interested in joining us.

The Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia
His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Rtd)

The Hon Margaret Reid AO

Jackie French AM

Mike Payne

  • Raise community awareness of the needs, rights and achievements of children and youth.
  • Encourage the community, children’s services, support groups, schools, youth and community groups to plan and conduct events to celebrate childhood and to highlight issues involving childhood and youth.
  • Honour parents and recognise the contribution of carers, workers and teachers in children’s development.
  • Assist individuals, groups and organisations to organise local activities and events that support and involve children and their families, through the provision of small seeding Grants.
  • Encourage the participation of both adults and children in activities and events to celebrate Children’s Week.
  • Provide opportunities for groups, organisations and schools to ‘open their doors’ to give the community an opportunity to see what children are doing and what they are doing for children.
  • Recognise the contribution of carers, workers, groups and organisations who contribute to the well being of children and young people through the presentation of Awards.
  • Recognise young people who are an example and role model for other young people through the presentation of Awards.



Mike Payne

0417 456 886

PO Box 4102, Weston Creek
ACT 2611

This Year’s Focus


Article 24 (simplified): “Children have the right to a safe and clean environment”

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
Adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly
resolution 44/25 of 20 November 1989
entry into force 2 September 1990, in accordance with article 49

Article 24 recognises the right of the child to “good quality health care, clean water, nutritious food and a clean environment so that they will stay healthy. Richer countries should help poorer countries achieve this”.  

Our History

In Australia, prior to 1977, Child Care Week was celebrated at different times of the year in a number of Australian states and territories with the focus being children in care or those in institutions. Following the International Year of the Child in 1979 the Commonwealth Government suggested that Universal Children’s Day be celebrated throughout Australia. The name was then changed to Children’s Week to take in a wider audience. Children’s Week Committees in each State and Territory seek to focus attention on the theme of Children’s Week – with due regard to the rights, needs and accomplishments of children, within the context of the family, the community and the world.

In 1996 it was decided to adopt a permanent theme – A Caring World Shares – as a reflection of Children’s Week aims with a sub-theme for each year, initially aligning with the designated International Year. In recent years the annual theme has been taken from the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which Australia is a signatory. 

The Committees seek to celebrate childhood and young people while valuing their unique culture and situation. They also assist in the organisation of local activities that support and involve children, young people, their families and all who care for them.


In 1985 a proposal was made for the formation of a National body and in 1987 the first Annual General meeting and Conference was held in Melbourne. It was agreed that there be annual meetings to keep each Committee aware of Australia-wide activities. It was resolved that:

A National Children’s Week Coordinating Committee be formed – the Children’s Week Council of Australia
Children’s Week be held on the same date in each State/Territory, from the Saturday before Universal Children’s Day to the Sunday following Universal Children’s Day.

The Children’s Week Council of Australia was incorporated in 1992 and in 1997 the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, Sir William Deane, became the Council’s Patron. All subsequent Governors General have continued this patronage.

The mission of the Children’s Week Council of Australia (CWCOA) is to encourage, support, guide, co-ordinate and monitor the widest possible participation of all States and Territories in Children’s Week, ensuring that programs and activities are open to all children regardless of race, colour, sex, ability, religion, nationality or social origin.

National Principles for Child Safe Organisations – Statement of Commitment

ACT Children’s Week is committed to and supports the implementation of the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations. Details, further information and resources relating to Child Safe Organisations and the ten National Principles are available Here.

Additional resources are also available on the Resources page of this website.

As part of this commitment all ACT Children’s Week Committee members hold current Working with Vulnerable People registration.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015 to end poverty, reduce inequality and build more peaceful, prosperous societies by 2030. Also known as the Global Goals, the SDGs are a call to action to create a world where no one is left behind.