Ridma Weerawardena is the latest musician from around the world to join the ILO’s Global Music Against Child Labour Initiative. The song is his contribution to the global and Sri Lankan fight to end child labour
Ridma’s perfect combination of voice and melody resonate hope.
“Child labour needs to be eradicated completely so that children are able to spend their childhood the way it should be spent”. He is confident and optimistic. His latest song පුංචි අත්තටු (Punchi Aththatu) translates in English as ‘Let them fly’ is set to launch with an accompanying music video on 26th November in Colombo. Ridma is the latest musician from around the world to join the ILO’s Global Music Against Child Labour Initiative. The song is his contribution to the global and Sri Lankan fight to end child labour.
Ridma Weerawardena is one of Sri Lanka’s most popular and talented young musical artists. He genuinely welcomes his engagement with the ILO as a musical advocate against child labour.
The Music Against Child Labour Initiative (MACLI), launched in 2013 by the ILO and some of the world's greatest musicians, calls on musicians worldwide to dedicate a concert or song to the struggle against child labour.
The Director of the ILO Country Office for Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Simrin Singh, sees the collaboration with Ridma Weerawardena and the accompanying music video as a significant contribution to the fight against child Labour. “I am so encouraged to see a Sri Lankan musician joining the global fraternity of musicians, using their talent and passion to amplify awareness and action to end child Labour.”
Sri Lanka is doing well in terms of a relatively low (compared to its South Asian neighbours) prevalence of child labour in its agricultural sector. The government has worked with local and international partners to tackle the issue systematically, and today child labour incidence stands at 1 percent of the child population. However, those in child labour are predominantly in hazardous and at times hidden forms, posing a challenge in the last stretch to zero prevalence.
In 2018, Sri Lanka became a self-declared “Pathfinder Country” under Alliance 8.7 leading the way to eliminate the worst forms of child labour by 2022 - ahead of the 2025 global target set forth to eliminate all forms of child Labour under the Sustainable Development Goals.
There are 152 million boys and girls in child labour worldwide.
We’ll be there when they need us As a helping hand So that they know we won’t let them tear apart The world of music takes a stand!