Childrens participation in shaping responses to COVID19

Results from the survey "COVID-19: Children’s Participation in shaping responses" have been published

As the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child has recently stated, underlining various longstanding national and European laws and recommendations, children’s views should be taken into account in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Children’s participation in decision making is not a luxury, it is a protective measure and children have shown many times that they make valuable contributions in responding to disasters and risk reduction. By enabling children to help shape responses to COVID-19 we can ensure that rules and services take proper account of their rights and needs. This will help increase safety and efficiency, promote health and well being and generate constructive long-term solutions to the personal, health, education, social care, community and economic challenges that lie ahead in the period of recovery.   

This rapid evidence report report led by Prof Cath Larkins, University of Central Lancashire, contains findings from a survey conducted (in one week, April 2020) with 95 professionals contacted through children’s participation and rights networks in 20 countries, including their reports of children’s perspectives. This evidence, from across Europe, illustrates:  

  • Difficult conditions experienced by children in all countries, related to health, communication barriers, information shortages and digital reliance. Plus, additional challenges in many countries, related to accessing education, basic essentials, care and safety, mental health and well-being, involvement in decision making; and arising from exposure to violence, changes in family life, falling family and personal income and employment, inaccessible services and ongoing discrimination.
  • Additional exposure to these challenges faced by children in alternative care, care leavers, young Roma, migrant children, children with experience of vulnerable family situations, poverty and disabilities.
  • Response measures at national, local and organisational levels, introduced to try to address these challenges and mitigate risks, showing the value of and need for children’s participation, identifying experiences, concerns and solutions, including with children in vulnerable situations. 

The report features details of the participatory activities and a list of recommendations on how to improve participatory practice to help shape responses to COVID-19 while protecting children’s rights. 

Read the full publication here.

Eurochild was involved in disseminating the survey through its network and will aim to make use of the findings in its work.

Related News/Events

3 November 2022

Not my crime, still my sentence

Eurochild member COPE's child participation projects gather experiences of children of incarcerated parents An estimated 2.1 million children are separated from a parent in prison in Europe countries on any…
read more
26 September 2022

Eurochild Children's Council gives Child Participation in Safeguarding training at Keeping Children Safe's Summit

Anna, Iva, Andre and Lana share their experiences regarding child safeguarding measures in child participation that are essential in city councils, schools, in case of traumatic experiences and in the…
read more
29 August 2022

Participate to the 14th Forum on the Rights of the Child

This year's Forum will take place on 27-29 September online and will focus on empowering, protecting and including children. On the afternoons of the 27, 28 and 29 of September, the…
read more