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Getting to Know the National Eurochild Forums: Bulgaria

Get to know the National Eurochild Forums in their own words. In this blog, the National Network for Children (NNC) , which hosts one of the four NEFs, reveals how in its work children and young people are acting as equal partners in all initiatives, projects, campaigns and advocacy events organized by NNC.

Since 2017, the National Eurochild Forum activities in Bulgaria have been facilitated by the National Network for Children (NNC). NNC is a network bringing together 130 organizations, working directly in the social field with children and families in the country.

Child participation is one of our main priorities. Trainings on citizenship education and civic participation are an integrated part of our participatory network ‘Megaphone’. Different types of learning spaces are available to children for them to discuss key topics related to their lives, form and present their opinions and advocate for their rights.

NNC sustainably supports children in forming their opinions and in doing research to represent the opinions of broader groups of children in the defense of children's rights and civic participation.

The methodology is based on participatory action research and encourages young people to work in constantly changing teams. Children (14-16 years old) take part in an initial training where they identify the topic they want to work on (e.g. education, ecology, financial literacy, social media, school bullying, juvenile justice, mental health and healthcare). Then, the 14 young researchers, which are selected on an annual mandate, develop research instruments, participate in data collection, processing and interpretation of the results.

Young people are also empowered to present the data analyses in front of various audiences (peers, politicians, representatives of various organizations and institutions, journalists, etc.) at local, national and international level. This was the case with the presentation of the 2023 Report Card on the status of childcare in Bulgaria and the NNC annual meeting attended by more than 150 professionals. Additionally, young people participated in international conferences organized by partner organizations and in the presentation of a report during the children’s pre-session at the Committee on the Rights of the Child.

In addition to this, NNC further contributes to the Eurochild’s Child Participation Strategy with the presence of a Bulgarian representative, Alexandra, in the Eurochild Children’s Council (ECC) for 2022-2024. NEF representatives to the ECC have expressed their opinions on key priorities such as advocacy, management decisions and important events related to the work of Eurochild.

For further information on the activity of the Bulgarian National Eurochild Forum feel free to contact Kristina Nenova, Children Youth Participation Coordinator for the National Network for Children (NNC).

For further information on the National Eurochild Forums feel free to contact Lenia Kriki, Child Participation and Policy Officer at Eurochild.

 




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