Joint Ministerial Letter: Safe Schools Declaration

The ICPNC joined with partners including the Canadian International Education Policy Working Group (CIEPWG), The Romeo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative and Human Rights Watch, in co-signing a joint public letter to the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, National Defence, and International Development and La Francophonie. The joint public letter welcomes Canada’s endorsement of the Safe Schools Declaration earlier this year, and urges the Government of Canada to continue Canada’s international leadership in support of protecting the rights of children affected by armed conflict.

For more information, please consult the final version of the joint letter.

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International Journal of Human Rights Special 2017 Issue: Facilitating Meaningful Participation in Child Protection

ICPNC is cognizant of the need for greater emphasis on child protection as a development approach resulting in fertile ground for innovative work. The Child Participation Working Group proudly coordinated and contributed to International Journal of Human Rights Special 2017 Issue: Facilitating Meaningful Participation in Child Protection which was successfully published to discuss the challenges and opportunities that were highlighted at the Facilitating Child Protection in International Child Protection Conference regarding the actual and potential participatory role of children and young people in effective child protection.

Excerpt: In recent years, increasing international attention surrounding children and young people’s participation in international development and humanitarian interventions has grown. This special issue contributes perspectives from different continents and fields of study/disciplines. At the same time, the articles raise important questions regarding the import of children and young people’s participation in international child protection and readers will thereby be encouraged, it is hoped, to consider the implications for children’s rights in a broad range of practical settings as well as for child human rights theory. We hope that the arguments presented in this volume will add enthusiasm to ongoing, critical research and mobilization towards effective child protection.

Global Affairs Canada & ICPNC Universal Children’s Day Event (November 2016)

A huge thank you to all who supported the development and roll out of the Global Affairs Canada ICPNC collaborative Universal Children’s Day Event on November 24th! Congratulations to all for a very successful event that created space for quality meaningful participation and engagement of young people, exemplary panel presentations, and valuable discussion with the Child Protection Unit, Global Affairs Canada.

ICPNC was fortunate to have a group of over 40 children and youth grades 6 to 12  who were very interested in children’s rights, passionate in the initiatives they are leading in their own schools, and keen to ask questions during their private event and the panel. During the session, the young people learned about their rights through a participatory play-based activity, explored strengths and barriers to their rights, and delved into actions they can take as young people and recommendations they have for adults at the school, community, national and global level.

During the Panel, Karina Gould MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development highlighted that “children and youth are powerful agents of social change”, while child rights advocate and former senator, Landon Pearson shared her proudest moments of starting a movement of engaging child delegates in the World Fit for children summit in UN, David Morley, President and CEO, UNICEF Canada honed in on importance of child protection, and Divina Usabase, youth ambassador and advocate voiced a need for greater emphasis on Mental Health education and awareness.

The children and youth asked a plethora of questions on indigenous rights, poverty in Canada, LGBTQ rights, and what Canada was like prior to the UNCRC. A teacher from Hopewell school emailed that “the panel discussion was right at the kids’ level and they felt so respected, mature and important having these esteemed adults actively listening to their concerns and taking their questions seriously.”

Thank you to those who supported preparing questions for the panelists!

Child Participation and Safeguarding Briefing Note (October 2016)

Briefing Note 

By Christina Brinco and Tara M. Collins
With the valuable support of the Child Participation Working Group of the
International Child Protection Network of Canada

One of the more significant unifying exercises addressed through the Facilitating Child Participation in International Child Protection Conference, which convened at Ryerson University from October 5th and 6th, 2015, was a discussion on the definition of child and youth participation in relation to the elaboration from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (2009). Plenary presentations discussed ways that NGOs have incorporated children’s participation in their activities. Following conversations about the definition of participation, plenary discussions delved into connecting children’s rights approaches to advance child and youth participation in planning, resolutions to protection, and inadequacies in current models of safeguarding.

Following conversations about the definition of participation, plenary discussions delved into connecting children’s rights approaches to advance child and youth participation in planning, resolutions to protection, and inadequacies in current models of safeguarding.

For the more information, please consult the ICPNC Briefing Note- Child Participation and Safeguarding (October 2016).

If you are interested in learning more about the recommendations arising from
conference discussions, please find here the Facilitating Child Participation in International Protection Summary to access conference materials.

Exploring Tensions in Child Participation in International Child Protection (October 2016)

Briefing Note
By Christina Brinco and Tara M. Collins

With the valuable support of the Child Participation Working Group of the
International Child Protection Network of Canada

The Facilitating Child Participation in International Child Protection Conference convened at Ryerson University from October 5th and 6th, 2015. Participants heard voices of professionals in the field of children’s rights from various academic institutions, government affiliates and non-governmental agencies and from children and youth. These children and youth were involved in a preparatory meeting in advance of the conference in order to support their understanding of the tensions.

During this meeting, many of their concerns were brought to light and added to the discourse at the conference that followed. The conference participants sought to address concerns in child participation and protection through the sharing of expertise in the field, and by addressing gaps in international frameworks. 

This briefing note disseminates the knowledge shared over the two conference days as they relate to current tensions

For an in-depth analysis please consult the Briefing Note- Exploring Tensions in Child Participation in International Child Protection.

Webinar: Child Protection Systems Strengthening Approach (November 2016)

Child Protection in the era of the Sustainable Development Goals; Learning from evidence and rethinking approaches to policy and practice

ICPNC’s Monitoring & Evaluation Working Group was delighted to host the webinar on Child Protection Systems Strengthening Approach which was borne out of informal discussions and reflections between colleagues from Child Frontiers, World Vision and the International Institute for Child Rights and Development (IICRD) noting the need on reflecting from on-going global efforts to strengthen child protection systems, particularly about its potential effectiveness and its considerable challenges to apply it to operational and functioning child protection systems in countries with very different cultural, political, historical and economic contexts.

This webinar focused on the learning from on-going global efforts to strengthen child protection systems in development and humanitarian settings. There appears to be a shared sense among many practitioners and organizations that discussions about how to transform child protection theory and policy into practice have reached a critical juncture.

The conclusions of various studies and evaluations show that, despite a general consensus about the potential effectiveness of the systems approach, there remain considerable challenges to apply this theoretical approach to operational and functioning child protection systems in countries with very different cultural, political, historical and economic contexts

Guest Speakers:

  • Dr. Philip Cook is the founder and current Executive Director of the International Institute for Child Rights and Development (IICRD) and Faculty at Royal Roads University (RRU), in Canada.
  • Bill Forbes is the Director of Child Protection for World Vision International, providing leadership to efforts to strengthen prevention and response to abuse, exploitation and neglect of children. Previously, Bill led the World Vision Peace and Justice Program in Cambodia for eight years, with a special focus on trafficking, sexual exploitation and abuse of children.

For more information on the webinar, please consult the Strengthening Approach Summary Q&A  and Briefing Note.

Webinar: Safeguarding in Sports

In April 2016, the Child Safeguarding Working Group organized the second webinar of their webinar series:

International Child Safeguards in Sport 

Daniel Rhind, Senior Lecturer Social Psychology,  and Frank Owusu-Sekyere, PhD Researcher, who are lead researchers from Brunel University London for the International Child Safeguarding in Sport 3 Year Oak Foundation Research Study facilitated an excellent and informative webinar that included an:

  1. Introduction of the Child Safeguarding in Sport Safeguards
  2. Examples of research case studies on practical strengths and challenges of implementation of safeguards
  3. Q&A.

Below you can find the Webinar Materials: