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Child Protection Hub for South Eastern Europe is launched


December 8, 2014, Budapest, Hungary:Terre des hommes and its partners in South East Europe launched a Child Protection Hub, an interactive platform for learning and knowledge sharing among child protection professionals.
The Child Protection Hub aims at providing professionals from Albania, BiH, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Moldova, Romania, Serbia and possibly other countries in the region with interactive tools for working, with space for regular learning and communication and with an opportunity to become a part of a strong regional community of practice.
“This is not a project as usual – this is a long term initiative embedded in the region that should be owned by all the people who need support in child protection”, says Presiana Manolova, representative of one of the project’s donor, Oak Fondation.
During the meeting in Budapest partners discussed ways of working, success factors and possible challenges. Although participating organisations all come from different countries, cultures and backgrounds, they all agreed on the shared vision for the initiative:
“Our vision is a world where ambitious, enthusiastic child protection workers create a nurturing and safe environment for all children in an inclusive manner”.
The partners have also agreed on the common values of the project that any other organisaton joining the project should share: transparency, trust, constant learning, respect and love.
The three days of work were full of passionate discussions, negotiations and insights. All participants agreed that to ensure the success of the initiative we will reduce the gaps between children, families, professionals and policy makers, we will make sure the initiative is recognized as a space for finding support to improve children’s lives, we will ensure accessibility of knowledge and tools to professionals in remote and ‘hard-to-access’ areas, we will base children and families’ situations to influence practices and policies, we will inspire professionals to learn and interact regularly though the website and possibly will go beyond the geographical boundaries of the project.
The project stakeholders have shared their expectations from the RRC:
“I expect the Hub to encourage professionals to share and discuss difficulties in regards to social protection of children and moreover to play a part towards acknowledgement of minimal standards of work with children across region, to illuminate problems that we might all know about but nobody is talking about it, and to encourage professional to remain strong against local current difficulties”, says Milica Djordjevic, Director of Centre for youth integration in Serbia.
“I hope the Child Protection Hub will become an accessible, resourceful tool for child protection professionals in CEE (and wider). A tool that can build capacities, create networks and strengthen services”, says Kirsten Theuns, Country Representative of Terre des hommes in Romania.
Implementing partners in the project are Terre des hommes Albania, Save the Children North West Balkans, Know-how Centre for alternative care for children in Bulgaria, Brave Phone in Croatia, Terre des hommes – Kosovo, Terre des hommes – Moldova, Terre des hommes – Romania, Centre for Youth Integration in Serbia, and the Center for Excellence for Looked After Children in Scotland (CELCIS), but the project aims at inspiring and involving many other professionals and organisations from the region and beyond.
The project is funded by the European Union’s DAPHNE program, the Austrian Development Agency and Oak Foundation.