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Development of the National Strategy on Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making (2014-2020) Anne O’Donnell, Head of Citizen Participation.

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Presentation on theme: "Development of the National Strategy on Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making (2014-2020) Anne O’Donnell, Head of Citizen Participation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Development of the National Strategy on Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making ( ) Anne O’Donnell, Head of Citizen Participation Annual Comhairle na nÓg Information and Networking Meeting May

2 Introduction and Context: Builds on developments and achievements under Goal 1 of the National Children’s Strategy (2000) One of the strategies under the National Policy Framework for Children and Young People , in which the voice of the child is a core principle and transformational goal Policy Framework Vision: ‘For Ireland to be one of the best small countries in which to grow up and to raise a family and where the rights of all children and young people are respected, protected and fulfilled; where their voices are heard and where they are supported to realise their maximum potential now and in the future.’ Development of the first National Strategy on Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making 2

3 1.1 Establishment of a Voice of the Child Thematic Group (2011), involving key Government Departments and agencies and five academics with expertise in the area 1.2 Literature Review (2011) by Professor Ursula Kilkelly et al (UCC) – Provides an overview of implementation of voice of the child objectives in the National Children’s Strategy (2000) – Identifies strengths, weaknesses, gaps and areas for further development – with a focus on policy, legislation, structures, practice and evidence – Will be published as a reference document alongside this strategy Methodology: Strategy development process (Stage 1) 3

4 1.3 Consultation with Children and Young People (2011) – 66,700 children and young people took part. Life as a child and young person in Ireland (2012) outlines key consultation messages: the importance of education, schools, friendships, activities and sports and concerns about the recession 1.4 Public Consultation (2012) – Over 1,000 respondents - very similar findings to children’s consultation, particularly on the importance of education, schools and family support 1.5 Evidence Base – DCYA Audit of Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making (2011) documents levels of participation in different sectors – Monitoring and evaluation of DCYA initiatives: Dáil na nÓg, Comhairle na nÓg, consultations and other initiatives – Research commissioned under the DCYA – Irish Research Council Research Development Initiative in 2010 and 2012 Strategy development process (Stage 1) - continued 4

5 2.1 Strategy Sub Group (2013) Comprising key Departments and agencies and Professor Laura Lundy (Queen’s University), whose children’s participation model is being used 2.2 Bi-lateral meetings with Government Departments, agencies and within DCYA (Sept 2013 – Mar 2014) – High level of commitment with more happening than expected – All stakeholders completed/completing a template to identify actions for delivery under the strategy 2.3 Bilateral meetings with Ombudsman for Children, Mental Health Commission and Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) Strategy development process (Stage 2) 5

6 2.4 Consultation with stakeholder groups (Nov 2013 – May 2014) – Strategy objectives presented to the National Children’s Advisory Council (NCAC) and National Youth Work Advisory Council (NYWAC) in Nov 2013 – Consultation with NCAC and NYWAC sub-groups (June 2014) – Consultation with co-ordinators of Comhairle na nÓg (June 2014) 2.5 Memo to Government and publication (July 2014) Strategy development process (Stage 2) continued 6

7 Guided and influenced by the Article 12, UNCRC Takes account of young people in the transition to adulthood Uses Lundy model of participation Includes recommendations from the EU Commission and Council of Europe Adopts principles for participation from the Council of Europe Recommendations CM/Rec(2012)2 of the Committee of Ministers Recognises collective and individual participation Presents participation as a developing area of policy and practice and new to many stakeholders Evidence based Strategy Approach 7

8 Model of participation (Lundy) 8

9 Strategy Goal: Children and young people will have a voice in all aspects of their individual and collective lives Strategy Focus: The everyday lives of children and young people and the places and spaces where they are entitled to have a voice on decisions that affect their lives Priority areas for action: – Children and young people will have a voice in decisions made in their local communities – Children and young people will have a voice in decision-making in early education, schools and the wider formal and non-formal education systems – Children and young people will have a voice in decisions that affect their health and wellbeing, including on the health and social services delivered to them – Children and young people will have a voice in the courts and legal system. Goal, Focus and Priorities of Strategy 9

10 effective leadership to champion and promote participation of children and young people development of education and training for professionals working with and on behalf of children and young people mainstreaming the participation of children and young people in the development of policy, legislation and research Additional Strategy objectives 10

11 ensuring the protection and welfare of children and young people in accordance with Children First improvement and establishment of mechanisms to ensure the participation of seldom heard and vulnerable children and young people in decision-making collection of data, monitoring and evaluation of all children and young people’s participation initiatives Strategy fundamentals 11

12 Establishment of a Participation Hub as a national centre for excellence on children’s participation in decision-making, to support implementation of the strategy and – champion and promote participation – develop and conduct training – document and disseminate learning – establish an online children’s participation database – form strategic partnerships with organisations in developing and documenting best practice Key Strategy Action for DCYA 12

13 Groundwork on establishment of the Hub has already started with partnerships: – DCYA & HBSC Team (NUIG) – involving children and young people in development the Health Behaviour of School-Aged Children (HBSC) Survey Ireland, 2014 – DCYA & Barnardos Amplifying Voices Initiative – involving seldom heard children and young people in decision-making – DCYA, TCD School of Education & National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals (NAPD) – Learner Voice Initiative in schools – DCYA & the Ark Children’s Cultural Centre – to empower children to meaningfully contribute to decision-making in the Ark – DCYA & the GAA – on involving children and young people in decision-making in the GAA Fledgling Hub – already started 13

14 Established in October 2013 DCYA and senior academics from five third level institutions in Ireland (NUIG, Queen’s, UCC, UCD, TCD) Role of the Research Group is to collaborate with DCYA to: – co-author participation initiatives – develop training modules and materials – build a strong evidence base for children’s participation in decision-making Four research collaborations already underway with DCYA: – NUIG School of Health Sciences - on involving children and young people in development of HBSC Ireland, 2014 – UCD School of Education – on supporting the Comhairle na nÓg National Executive in its work over the next 2 years – TCD School of Nursing and Midwifery – on empowering children to contribute to decision-making in the Ark Children’s Cultural Centre – UCC School of Law – on involving children and young people in decision- making in the GAA DCYA Children’s Participation Hub – Research Advisory Group 14

15 Leadership will continue to come from the DCYA Citizen Participation Unit in collaboration with other key DCYA units, including Research, Early Years and Youth Affairs Participation Hub will be a resource and support for all stakeholders in implementing this strategy Implementation structures for the broader Policy Framework will include mechanisms to ensure oversight of implementation of the Participation Strategy Conclusion: Implementation and Oversight 15

16 An audit of children and young people’s Participation in Decision-making (2011) (www.dcya.gov.ie) Life as a Child and Young Person in Ireland: Report of a Consultation with children and young people (2012) (www.dcya.gov.ie)www.dcya.gov.ie Council of Europe Recommendation CM/Rec(2012)2 of the Committee of Ministers (www.coe.int) References 16


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