Latest News

Influencing the use of EU funds in the best interest of children through reviewed EU cooperation framework

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In 2017 and 2018, the Thematic Network of European Social Fund on Partnership has been working on the review of the European Code of Conduct on Partnership which sets out a cooperation framework between the European Commission, public authorities, social partners and civil society. The scope of the Thematic Network on Partnership is to provide an effective space for the users of European Social Fund (ESF) in order to assist ESF managing authorities, intermediate bodies and wider stakeholders from across the ESF to improve partnership practice.  
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Opening Doors contributes to the new legislation on family-based care in Greece

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On 26 April 2018, representatives of the Opening Doors Campaign were invited to the Hellenic Parliament to participate in the consultation with representatives of children’s rights organisations regarding the draft law on adoption and foster care. Following the hearing of the Permanent Parliamentary Committee on Social Affairs, the Hellenic Parliament passed the draft of the new legislation on 2 May 2018. “This is a progressive law which will enable the development of family-based forms of care for children in Greece which, in turn, will catalyse deinstitutionalisation reforms at national level,” say Katerina Nanou, Policy and Advocacy Officer at Eurochild and Coordinator of the Opening Doors for Europe’s Children Campaign and Mary Theodoropolou, Director of the Roots Research Center who coordinates the Opening Doors Campaign in Greece at national level. 
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Family-based care is now prevailing over institutions for children in Latvia

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The number of children without parental care who grow up in foster families for the first time exceeded the number of children living in institutions in Latvia, according to the data released by the State Inspectorate for the Protection of the Children’s Rights (VBTAI). At the same time, the share of children under the age of three who grow up in the state-run institutions dropped below 10 percent.

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Belgium: segregation policies in Flemish schools breach the rights of children with disabilities, European Committee of Social Rights says

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According to a recent decision from the European Committee of Social Rights, the Flemish community of Belgium denies access to mainstream education to disabled children and fails to provide the necessary assistance to ensure such inclusion. The complaint was initiated by international human rights organisation Validity Foundation (formerly the Mental Disability Advocacy Centre) in collaboration with Flemish organisation “Equal rights for every person with a disability” (GRIP – Gelijke Rechten voor Iedere Persoon met een handicap), national partner of the Opening Doors for Europe’s Children campaign in Belgium.

Evidence from the Opening Doors National Coordinator in Belgium also shows that children with disabilities in Belgium are among those who are the most discriminated against. In 2015, there were 7,917 children in institutional care in Flanders of whom 7,286 were those with disabilities and 466 children were below the age of 5.

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Europe’s civil society calls on the EU to reinforce and expand its pivotal role towards children’s deinstitutionalisation

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On 20 March 2018, civil society representing over 300 organisations from 25 European countries who work with and for children wmet key EU level stakeholders in Brussels to discuss how the EU can ensure better outcomes for children and their families through the post-2020 EU budget. The event, titled “Maintain, Strengthen, Expand How the EU can support the transition from institutional to family and community-based care in the next MFF”, explored how the EU can retain, reinforce and expand its pivotal role towards children’s deinstitutionalisation and the transformation of child protection systems in Europe.
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