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Children’s rights gathering looks to national governments for action

Press release

(Brussels, 17 June 2021) In a historic week in which 27 EU Social Affairs Ministers adopted the landmark initiative of the European Child Guarantee, the children’s rights community gathers to demand national governments act on their promises. Over 200 participants including children gather online today and tomorrow for Eurochild’s annual General Assembly and Member’s Day.

Considering the devastating impact of the pandemic on children, and the 18 million children who were facing poverty even before the pandemic, the Eurochild network calls on national governments to urgently invest in children using the European Child Guarantee and EU budget.

Vice President of the European Commission Dubravka Šuica shared her perspective with the Eurochild membership via video address:

“Every child in Europe and across the world should enjoy the same rights and live free of discrimination. The EU child rights strategy has been developed for and together with children, with more than 10,000 children contributing their ideas. We are extremely proud of this collaboration and would like to thank Eurochild for helping us make the consultations with children a reality.”

Vice President Šuica also thanked Eurochild network for its “dedication, tireless efforts and high quality work on children’s rights”. She shared her hope of seeing all EU member states investing in the “strengthened protection and promotion of child rights through targeted measures and resources”.

The journey Eurochild has been on until now has been long and hard fought. This week’s adoption of the European Child Guarantee initiative marks an important turning point in our history of tackling child poverty. These instruments will only have a real impact on the lives of children if action is taken at national level. I am delighted that we have a strong showing of our diverse membership today, who with their expertise will help us develop and realise our vision for children’s rights.” – H.E. Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, President of Eurochild

On the occasion of the annual gathering of its membership, Eurochild released a digital annual report of 2020 sharing the story of how it overcame the new and evolving challenges and supported members and children over the course of the pandemic. Amongst the various successes, Eurochild managed to effectively advocate for investing in children through the EU budget; numerous consultations with children helped raise their perspectives with key decision-makers and policy makers; the expertise of members allowed Eurochild to gather the situation of children across 25 countries which fed into discussions to put children first in Europe’s post-pandemic recovery.

>Access the online annual report of Eurochild.

Background

Eurochild is a children’s rights network with almost 200 members spread across 35 countries in Europe. The membership gathers annually for the General Assembly and Members’ Day, which is being held online this year on 17-18 June 2020.

Earlier this week, on 14 June 2021, 27 EU Social Affairs Ministers unanimously adopted the Council Recommendation on the European Child Guarantee. Eurochild celebrated this landmark initiative which guarantees free and effective access for children in need to essential services such as healthcare, nutrition and education. Read the Eurochild public statement.