04 April 2019

The Vote for Children campaign launches at European Parliament

Alemadina spent three years living in an orphanage in Bosnia and Herzegovina without any of the love or attention she needed. Now she lives with Rada, a warm and experienced foster mother.

Author: Louise Bonneau, EU Advocacy Officer

Today, at the European Parliament, Hope and Homes for Children joins forces with a coalition of partners to launch the Vote for Children campaign, to ensure that the next European Parliament continues to defend and protect children’s rights at home and abroad, and guarantee that all children can grow up in families.

2019 is a year of change in the European Union (EU). In less than two months, voters across the EU will make their voice heard in the European Parliament elections. Elected members of the new European Parliament will help shape the future EU priorities, policies and funds for the next five years.

Leaving aside the uncertainties and controversies of the Brexit process, one thing is certain, the EU has a key role to play in delivering care reform for children in the countries where we work in Europe and around the world. In fact, outside of its border, the EU and its Member States constitute the world’s largest development aid donor, providing more than 50% of assistance worldwide. When this development aid is directed the right way, such as through our EU-funded project in Sudan, children and their families can be directly supported (first Mother and Baby Unit).

Through our EU Liaison Office, Hope and Homes for Children continues to work to ensure the best outcomes for vulnerable children by pushing the EU to become a champion for care reform worldwide.

It was therefore very important for us to be part of the Vote for Children campaign, launched today in the European Parliament.

Together with our partners, including Eurochild, ChildFund Alliance, the European Youth Forum, Lumos, Plan International, Missing Children Europe, SOS Children’s Villages International, Terre des Hommes, the Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants, Save the Children, World Vision, World organization of the Scout Movement, and Unicef, we are seeking for children’s issues to be placed at the top of the agenda for the European Parliament elections in 2019.

 

In particular, we call on the on European Parliamentary candidates to become Child Rights Champions to:

  1. BREAK the cycles of poverty, inequality and conflict for future generations
  2. INVEST in children inside and outside Europe
  3. LISTEN to children’s voices, INVOLVE them in decisions affecting them and ACT on children’s views

 

One of our key asks for future members of the European Parliament is to re-establish a core working group of members of the European Parliament prioritising children rights, otherwise known as “Intergroup on Children’s Rights”.

These champions should make sure that all EU policies and funds targeting countries inside and outside of the EU respect the rights of children, promote comprehensive child protection systems and support the transition from institutional to family and community-based care.

If you are going to the polls coming May, help us by voting for a Child Rights Champion. All Child Rights Champions will be listed on our website.

In this way we will be one step closer to making sure child protection systems across the world are strengthened, and institutional care of children is ultimately eliminated.

For more information, on the key asks of the campaign and to find out who is Child Rights Champions in your country, check out the Children’s Rights Manifesto website.

*This work is supported by Clifford Chance