All the partners in the project had the opportunity to gather for the second time during the so called Mid-Term European Meeting that took place in Bratislava from the 27th November to the 1st of December. It has been an important occasion to share the work done so far in all the different countries, receive inputs from the invited experts and offer feedback about each national project. In fact the activities at national level in each of the 8 partners are proceeding with full speed and the first results are already tangible! All the partners after consulting in different ways with their membership (via surveys, smaller or larger meetings) and experts active in the field of child protection, have identified the goals they want to reach and are now working hard to deliver on time the actions that will support them in ensuring safer environments within their organisations. What kind of actions? That depends because each partner have identified different actions to be developed, always in the frame of the training leaders to better prevent and react to harmful situations. From the development and testing of training modules, the design of codes of conduct or toolkits to the creation of new policies many have been the ways of implementing the key element of the Safe from Harm project: all leaders working with children and young people to have a sound understanding of what violence means, what forms it can take and how to react to it properly. The sharing during the meeting was enriched by the inputs of two distinguished guest speakers: Rita Ehrenfors from the Guide and Scouts of Sweden and Susie Morgan from the team of the Council of Europe working on Children rights – child abuse. Rita offered an interesting insight of the amazing work done in Sweden in the field of child protection: it has been extremely inspiring to get to know how another scout organization managed to get successful in implementing policies and developing tools, including for instance the main challenges encountered and how they were overcame. Her input and the case of Sweden offered a very positive vision to all the partners: they confirmed that it is possible to reach a great impact in protecting more and more children and young people in scouting even if it might take time, resources and energies. Well done Sweden! The input delivered by Susie gave a different perspective but also very interesting and helpful in the way to support the work of the partners. Not everybody is unfortunately aware of what the Council of Europe is doing for the protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse. She offered an overview of all the different actions and resources available also to Scout organisations, such as for instance the important campaign One in Five. Almost all the partners decided after this input to get in touch with the national focal points of the Council of Europe to discuss possible cooperation and for sure will check the different resources available while defining each national project.
Indeed it has been an extremely helpful occasion to continue on the right track the work that started some months ago in the first meeting in Madrid. Now all the partners are even more ready to deliver relevant actions for the safety of all their young members. All the partners will be meet again at the end of June 2014 in Brussels for the last meeting that will be complemented by a conference that will be organized to re-state once again the importance of child protection in youth organisations and to showcase the results achieved by the project. So, see you all in Brussels!
Rita from the The Swedish Guide and Scout Council sharing their very succesful experience on child protection. Well done Sweden!
Safe from Harm puzzle to start with…
Not just tools but an integrated approach for NSOs to develop child protection policies.
The European Mid-term Meeting has just started! 28 participants from 8 countries gathered in Bratislava to share, discuss and plan actions to keep scouts Safe from Harm in National Scout Organisations!