The 100 Million campaign is a youth-led call to action for a world where all young people are free, safe and educated. We support young people to mobilise to end violence against children, eradicate child labour, and ensure education, breaking the cycles of illiteracy, poverty and violence for good.
Inspired by the powerful voices of young activists around the world who are leading change in their communities, the 100 Million campaign was launched in India at the end of 2016, by 6,000 young people, standing side by side with Nobel Peace Laureate, and renowned child rights activist, Kailash Satyarthi. With support from the Kailash Satyarthi Children's Foundation, the campaign has worked to bring together impassioned young activists from every background to mobilise and advocate for the rights of the world’s most excluded children.
100 Million now has well-established partnerships with non-governmental organisations led by and/or defending the interests of children and young people. At the international level, these include the Global Students Forum (GSF), European Students' Union (ESU), the Organising Bureau of European School Student Unions (OBESSU), the All-Africa Students' Union (AASU), the Commonwealth Students' Association (CSA), Education International, and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). The campaign has established itself in 35 countries on five continents by bringing together youth activists with NGOs and teacher unions and supporting their mobilisation and advocacy activities with campaigning materials, policy briefings and face-to-face meetings.
In 2020, the campaign inaugurated its first board of trustees, with a supermajority of members under 30 and who between them represent over 50 million young people worldwide. In 2021, the Board of Trustees officially constituted a Foundation to govern the 100 Million campaign.
HOW WE WORK
Inspired by the strength and impact of former child slaves who have now become successful activists and rescuers themselves, 100 Million supports and empowers youth mobilisation, and aims to increase global compassion and understanding. We believe this will create a world where all young people are safe and learning in school, not earning to survive.
We know that achieving real, sustainable change needs commitment, collective power, and the active participation of those directly affected by a problem. To achieve justice for marginalised young people, it is critical that young people themselves organise. Investing in grassroots, collective organising strengthens young people's ability to build the in-depth knowledge and relationships essential to challenge injustice. That’s why we support young people in schools, universities and communities to organise in local youth-led groups.
Our network also includes representative youth organisations, led by democratically elected youth activists; teachers' unions nationally and internationally; and NGOs working together to seek multidimensional solutions to the multiple deprivations faced by marginalised children. These organisations lend their support to 100 Million by mobilising their networks to campaign for the rights of the excluded children, running solidarity actions, and advocating in national, regional, and global fora.
WHAT WE FIGHT FOR
No child should be born into, or flee from, danger; no child should be born to work; and no child should be denied their right to education and the opportunity to fulfil their dreams. But 258 million children still do not have access to quality leducation. Every day, 33,000 girls become child brides. 152 million children wake up for a day of hard labour, with almost half working in hazardous conditions. 142 million children live in areas with high intensity conflicts they had no part in creating.
These are not standalone injustices - they are interlinked: a child who is forced to work or marry is likely to be a child who does not go to school; a child may be forced to work because they or their family have fled their home due to conflict or climate disaster; a child forced to flee is at risk of trafficking and violence, and the lack of access to education or social protection deepens their exclusion. When the injustices faced by children and young people are interlinked, our solutions to end them must be too.
Read more about child exclusion, and the solutions we believe can end it, in our report Every Child, Every Community: youth activism to end child exclusion and marginalisation, or download our briefings on freedom, safety, and education.
In India, millions of children participated in a lesson about the campaign during the Bharat Yatra (India March), which saw over 800,000 people marching to raise awareness and effect policy change across the country – with many states agreeing to make changes to protect children from violence and abuse.
In Liberia and Uganda, youth activists are running regular outreach sessions in communities where children face multiple forms of exclusion. Their work engages children directly, and youth activists are empowering them with knowledge about their rights to freedom, safety, and education.
In Germany, youth activists have been working with Bread for the World and the German Education Union (Gewerkschaft Erziehung und Wissenschaft – GEW) to meet ministers and parliamentarians and have already secured a commitment for a new law against child labour from the government and the main political parties.
In Peru, a National Youth Committee is well-established and its work has already seen them invited to join the National Steering Committee for the Prevention and Eradication of Child Labour. The Peruvian campaign has hosted its first annual youth meeting, with government ministers in attendance, and is delivering a national outreach programme to set up regional youth committees across the country.
In Japan, thousands of people, including Parliamentarians in the National Diet, watched the award-winning film on child labour, The Price of Free, and youth activists worked together to create videos and social media content to raise the public awareness of child labour in the country
Find out more about the impact young people are having by looking through their latest actions.