Language: English

Different types of content for your letter

Adapt this content for your own purposes

If you are asking for information or resources:

You could make a general request for an information pack for young people. But if you are looking for specific information, try to be as precise as you can about the information you want.

For example:

“I am writing to you because I/we are researching the subject of child labour in __ (country/community). I/we would like to know if you have information about how many children below the age of 12 are involved in any economic activity, and how many other children are involved in work that may interfere with their education? Also, could you tell us exactly what our country's laws are on child labour?”

If you are writing to officials to give your view:

It is important to show you have a good understanding of the subject. However, don't make your letter too long.

For example:

“I am writing to you because I am very worried about the commercial sexual exploitation of children. I have read about this subject on UNICEF's website and in the press and I have also personally met a girl aged 15 who was offered a 'job' that turned out to involve sex.

It is terrible to think of people my own age whose lives are being ruined in this way. I know that young people have a right to be protected from abuse both under the Convention on the Rights of the Child and under the laws of our own country.

May I respectfully suggest two possible steps that might help with this problem? Firstly, to take more action to work with street children to find a solution, and secondly to set up a special force to track down the people who are behind the exploitation?

I would be very grateful if you would let me know your thoughts and proposals on this issue.”

If you are writing to the a newspaper or radio station to respond to an article or programme:

Remember that many people contact the media so do not be disappointed if your letter is not chosen the first time you write. When you write, be sure to give the date and title of the article or programme you're responding to.

For example:

“I am writing in response to your article "Schools face funding cuts" on __ (give exact date).

This is bad news for all students, but I wonder if you and your readers have considered the special implications for girls. Among 'developing' countries, including our own, 62.9 million girls are recorded as being out of school, as compared to 54.4 million boys. My friends and I conducted a survey that showed that nearly --% of girls in our local area are not regularly attending school. Any cut in resources is bound to make this situation worse.

I believe that giving all children an education should be a top priority. Until girls and women take their place as educated and valued members of our communities, our country will not only be denying a fundamental human right, but wasting a vital resource. No real success or development can be achieved with only half the population participating and contributing.”

Remember to use the correct form for all your letters (see the Letter template).

Now you have few useful example of how to write a letter, you next question would be, what about speaking in public?

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