With Children, for Children: From Ideas to Action

A photo from last year event

Date: 17 November 2016 
Location: European Parliament, Brussels

On the occasion of 2016 International Children’s Day, a symposium will bring together members of the European Parliament, European Commission officials and 12 children and young people from across Europe who have participated in local, national or international child participation projects. 

The objective is to demonstrate how Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and officials from the European Commission (EC) can engage with children around Europe in a meaningful way. 

There are over 100 Child Rights Champions in the European Parliament who have signed up to the Child Rights Manifesto and to “realising the rights of every child, everywhere!” The Manifesto includes a pledge to “make proactive efforts to engage children in decision making, monitoring and evaluation through promoting their involvement within your constituency and in EU debates, and ensuring their access to relevant and age appropriate information.”

Building on the successes of the 2015 International Children’s Day events in the European Parliament, plans are being made for the upcoming 2016 celebrations to help turn the above commitments and obligations into real action

We want to address, with children and adults, the intersections between the three key pledges of the Child Rights Manifesto: budgets and investment, child participation and information. That is, allocating money to build participation mechanisms and child-friendly information; children being informed on how money is spent in order to participate in decision-making, and participation enabling better construction and dissemination of information to support more robust and efficient budgets for children. 

The European Union institutions have been reflecting on the challenge of democratic deficit while they ignore the potential of children and young people’s ideas, opinions and solutions. It’s time for the European Parliament to become a beacon for child participation for other EU institutions to follow

The symposium ‘With Children – For Children: From ideas to action’ is organised by Eurochild, in partnership with the Universal Education Foundation (UEF), and builds on the participatory spirit and resources offered by CATS (Children as Actors for Transforming Society). 

The day’s activities will be supported by the European Parliament Intergroup on Children’s Rights (hosted by MEP Julie Ward) and Children’s International Press Centre (CIPC). The European Commission DG Education and Culture is also expected to be involved on this day. 

Read the reflections and commitments from the 2015 European Parliament Children’s Day event