CATS - Children as Actors for Transforming Society 2017

Speakers 2017

Kehkashan Basu
Kehkashan Basu (India/UAE)

16-year-old Kehkashan Basu , the winner of the 2016 International Children’s Peace Prize, will be a key invitee at CATS 2017! Born to Indian parents in the United Arab Emirates, she is a born campaigner for children’s rights. Breaking stereotypes about youth potential with her knowledge, passion and work ethic, at the age of 12 she was UNEP’s Global Coordinator for Children & Youth being the youngest person and the only minor to hold this position. Today, she is an environmental and child’s rights activist impacting the global change with her work on  peace and sustainability.



Julie Ward
Julie Ward (United Kingdom)

Julie Ward: MEP, co-founder of the European Parliament cross-party and cross-committee intergroup on Children’s Rights: a writer, theatre-maker and cultural activist who began her working life on the factory floor before becoming a community arts worker. In 1984 she was appointed director of a regional arts and disability organisation in the North of England and in 1986 she co-founded Jack Drum Arts, an artists’ cooperative that provides a wide range of activities for all sections of the community. In May 2014 she was elected a Labour Member of the European Parliament (MEP) to represent the NW of England. She is a member of the parliament’s committees on Culture and Education, Regional Development and Women rights’ & Gender Equality. She’s a board member of the European Internet Forum, and a founding member of the European Caucus of Women in Parliament. Julie is a children’s rights champion; she has co-founded the European Parliament cross-party and cross-committee intergroup on Children’s Rights. She is also active on a number of other intergroups, including Youth, Disability and LGBTI. She is now on the Labour Party’s Children and Education Policy Commission. She sits on the Citizen’s Panel of Durham University, the executive board of National Drama and is a volunteer for the Institute of Ideas national youth debating competition.