European football campaign launched for children with a parent in prison
Eurochild member Children of Prisoners Europe (COPE) is launching Game with Mum & Dad, a Europe-wide event where children with a parent in prison get to play a game of football with a father, mother or caregiver behind prison walls.
Children of Prisoners Europe (COPE) is a pan-European network working with and on behalf of children with imprisoned parents. The campaign is founded on the COPE network’s shared values of child safeguarding, child participation, non-discrimination and gender equality.
The chance to play a game of football with their mother or father and share this playful moment is a normal thing for most children. But it’s exceptional for the more than 2 million children with a parent in detention in Europe. It will remain in their memories for a long time.
“Playing a game together is a marvellous way for children and parents to strengthen a precious family bond at risk when a parent goes to prison,” said COPE Director Liz Ayre. “This event will draw much needed attention to the rights and needs of these children. We wish to empower these children despite the existence of prison walls.”
Children are involved in preparing and executing the event and their opinions and experiences are gathered throughout the project. All forms of discrimination are banned and participants are encouraged to express openness and tolerance. The events are gender neutral with girls, boys, fathers and mothers involved.
The Game with Mum & Dad concept has been pioneered and developed with great success by COPE’s Italian member BambiniSenzaSbarre since 2015.
Further info on COPE: