To celebrate United Nations & Unicef International Children’s Day, local dignitaries MP Mark Strahl, MLA Laurie Throness, Electoral B Director Dennis Adamson, and Mayor Wilfried Vicktor met up for a mock voting and question period at the Rec Centre.
The event was orchestrated by seven year old Violette Freimark and was attended by approximately 30 kids aged six to 12 from Coquihalla Elementary School. Dignitaries eloquently fielded questions by the young students, addressing issues such as human rights violations, climate change, inflation and elected government official salaries.
Violette organized the event along with her mom Catherine to help her fellow peers gain a better understanding of their rights and voice in modern government.
It all started when the aspiring future prime minister wanted waffles in bed. It was Mother’s Day, and upon her mother receiving breakfast in bed for the special occasion, Violette innocently asked, “when is it kids day?” and to that her mother suggested they find an answer to the pressing question.
After a successful google search the curious pair discovered the unique day, an International Children’s day the United Nations officially declared for November 20.
The emboldened young politician in training, felt it was appropriate to petition the local government to create a mock voting and question session, based on her desire to help others, especially children suffering disparities in local and foreign countries.
“I was very nervous,” said Violette of meeting up with her mock political counterparts and asking them to join her for the event. “They were all very nice,” she said of the four gents who graciously accepted her invitation.Violette imparted to The Hope Standard that she was a bit apprehensive about speaking publicly for the first time, but that she enjoyed the experience tremendously.
“I felt more grown up,” she said of the session. “And, I want everyone to know that voting is super easy.”
The home schooled gymnast enthusiast and pink lover, suggested that providing clean water, food, and education to children across the globe, and especially young girls was top on her list for things she would change or expedite through political involvement and activism.
“I think it’s important to encourage voters at a young age, and I want kids to know they can make a difference.” With money saved from an independent business venture in lemonade and fresh cut flowers, Violette contributed $15 of her earnings to help children overseas receive clean water through United Nations & Unicef International.