Haarlem’s very own children’s mayor, Quinten de Lange, is calling for nominations from the city’s residents to nominate Haarlemmers aged between 4 and 12 years for the chance to be rewarded for acts of kindness or dedication they have shown to the municipality of Haarlem or their neighbours. Three lucky individuals will be selected to be presented with a special kindelintje (children’s ribbon) on the occasion of Haarlem’s 775th birthday in November.

In August 2020, Haarlem appointed its first kinderburgemeester (children’s mayor), 11-year-old Quinten de Lange, who was voted in by the city’s school children, as well as its first ever Children’s Council. One of the first big tasks they will undertake is to hand out children’s ribbons on 23 November 2020 – the 775th birthday of Haarlem. Though, first they need to select the children who will be rewarded for their merits – and your help is needed!

Children’s voices are heard

kinderlintjeYou may have seen the good news that the Netherlands is a great place for kids to grow up (read our recent article here). It seems that one thing the Dutch municipalities might be getting right is setting policies ‘based on what we can learn from children themselves, including by consulting and listening to them.’ For some time, in addition to the ‘normal’ mayor, several Dutch municipalities also have a children’s mayor. The kindeburgemeesters are supported by KinderrechtenNU (KRNU), the foundation that brings children’s rights to the attention of municipalities, professionals, educators and children. The KRNU vision is outlined as: ‘Children’s rights start with child participation. Letting children discover and learn to practice this naturally from an early age is a prerequisite for a well-functioning participation society.’ It is great that Haarlem’s municipality now has a Children’s Council who will do what they can to make sure they and their peers are being heard and considered in city matters.

Make your nominations before 16 November

Haarlem's kindermeester Quintin

The children’s mayor of Haarlem, Quinten de Lange, calling for nominations

The children’s mayor is now asking for your help. Do you know a Haarlemmer aged between 4 and 12 years who does something special for someone else, for the city or for her/his environment? For example, someone who always tidies up the neighbourhood, gives a helping hand to their neighbours or gives their time to help other children with sports?

People of any age – adults and kids – can nominate a child or group of children. It is important that it is clearly described why specifically your nomination deserves an award, and you must do this by sending an email before 16 November. From all the submissions, the children’s mayor Quinten and the other members of the Children’s Council will select three children to receive the kindelintje (children’s ribbon) on 23 November 2020, the 775th birthday of Haarlem.

Watch Quinten ask for the help of fellow Haarlem children to make nominations:

 

Do you know a Haarlemmer aged between 4 and 12 years who does something special for someone else, for the city or for her/his environment?

Submit your nomination and motivation to: kinderburgemeester@haarlem.nl
Deadline: 16 November 2020

[Source: Gemeente Haarlem]

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Main photo: Students lent a helping hand to create this mural in Newberg, OR, US; full story here (credit: Tim Mossholder)

Carmel McNamara
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