This profile was prepared when Farith Simón was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1995.
The New Idea
The enactment of the Ecuadorian Minor's Code and Declaration of Children's Rights in 1992, which sought to bring national Ecuadorian law into compliance with the International Convention on Children's Rights, was the first concrete step toward institutionalizing children's rights in Ecuadorian society. Farith Simon, a lawyer who helped to write the new code, is now building the first mechanisms to clarify and implement the laws. To that end Farith is training lawyers how to defend children's rights. He is working to reform the social security system's "Children's Tribunal." He has created a national network of legal professionals, law students and children's advocates to educate the public about children's rights, to establish a body of law consistent with the letter and spirit of Ecuador's obligations and to reduce the suffering of children.