One year after the adoption of the Council recommendation, Youth Advisory Board meets Child Guarantee National Coordinator and authorities in Italy
One year after the adoption of the Council recommendation establishing the European Child Guarantee — inviting Member States to adopt national action plans to combat child poverty and social exclusion - adolescents and young people from the Youth Advisory Board (YAB) in Italy met the Child Guarantee National Coordinator and authorities to share their views on the processes underway.
The Youth Advisory Board, created to foster the participation of vulnerable children and adolescents in developing the Child Guarantee National Action Plan for Italy, was established in December 2021 by UNICEF as part of the European Child Guarantee pilot phase in collaboration with the Presidency of the Council of Ministers – Department for Family Policies and the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies.
The group is composed of 20 adolescents and young people, from different socio-economic backgrounds, whose task is collecting the voices of children and adolescents living in Italy and participating in the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the Child Guarantee. Since last December, the YAB and its subgroups met in Florence and continued their work to develop a set of recommendations, which were reported to national authorities and then integrated within the National Action Plan for the Child Guarantee (PANGI).
The Youth Advisory Board gathered again in mid-June, to meet with Ms. Anna Maria Serafini, Child Guarantee National Coordinator and with representatives from national authorities.
YAB members discussed the National Action Plan recently sent by the Italian government to the European Commission, which incorporates some of the observations already shared by the group. The meeting also aimed to lay the groundwork for activities that the Youth Advisory Board will carry out in the second half of 2022.
Among areas identified as key priorities for combating child poverty and social exclusion are education and community centres, for access to opportunities and quality of services. Great attention will also be paid to mental health issues. The group will continue the process of consultation with their peers to bring the voices of vulnerable children, adolescents and young people to institutional decision-makers and foster awareness on the issues identified.
UNICEF, is currently informing the implementation of the European Child Guarantee and showcasing innovative approaches for the social inclusion of the most disadvantaged children, and will continue supporting the YAB's work to ensure that all children and adolescents are heard and bring their voices to institutions and bodies responsible for implementing the Child Guarantee National Action Plan.
For more information visit https://www.unicef.org/eca/reports/programmatic-update-phase-iii-european-child-guarantee-april-2022.