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Ten Commitments to Improve the Situation of Children – Championed by 35 Non-Governmental Organisations and Four Political Parties

Save the Children and UNICEF have called upon political parties to undertake ten commitments to improve the situation of children in Romania, starting from the most urgent child problems and from the duties of our country as an EU and UN Member State. These ten commitments have been included in a Manifesto for Children, launched today – November 20, 2012 – to mark the Universal Children’s Day. The role of this document is to set standards that need to be considered by 2013-2020 public policies impacting children as well as by the initiatives to improve the relevant legal framework.

The Manifesto for Children has also been endorsed by 35 coalitions and non-governmental organisations in Romania, and so far it has been signed by four parties[1]: PDL (Mr. Vasile Blaga), PNL (Mr. Crin Antonescu), PSD (Ms. Corina Creţu), and UDMR (Mr. Kelemen Hunor). The list remains open to the other parties interested in joining the initiative. On behalf of the civil society, the 35 signatory organisations are: ActiveWatch – Media Monitoring Agency, “Împreună” Community Development Agency, The National Alliance for Rare Diseases, Social Alternatives Association, Casa Faenza Association from Timişoara, "We too can make it" Club Association, ‘We Beat Autism’ Association, Multicare Association from Suceava, "Always for Europe" Association, OvidiuRo Association, Romanian Prader Willi Association, The Romanian Association of Youth Initiatives, Împreuna.Info Humanitarian Association, CENTRAS – The Support Centre for Non-Governmental Organisations, “Step by Step” Centre for Education and Professional Development, The National Organisation of Romanian Scouts - ONCR, FDSC – the Foundation for Civil Society Development, VOLUM Federation – The Federation of Organisations Supporting Volunteering Development in Romania, Close to You Foundation, Education 2000+ Centre Foundation, Inocenţi Foundation, Împreună Foundation, The Princess Margarita Foundation, Pro Homini Foundation, Romanian Angel Appeal Foundation, Soros Foundation, Star of Hope Romania, “For You” Foundation and Social Services Centre, United Way Romania, Hope and Homes for Children Romania, Timişoara Intercultural Institute, Kinderzukunft – Rudolf Walther Foundation-Timişoara Branch, Roma Education Fund Romania, Romani Criss – The Roma Centre for Social Intervention and Studies, UNOPA – The National Union of Organisations of People Affected by HIV/AIDS.

November 20th is a very special day because it is the date on which the international community adopted both the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, in 1959, and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, in 1989. We would like this day to also mark a step forward in addressing the most urgent problems affecting children in Romania, with key  stakeholders endorsing the Manifesto for Children”, declared Gabriela Alexandrescu, Executive President of Save the Children.

As a Member State of the European Union, Romania has the obligation to incorporate in its children’s lives the standards set out in the European Union Agenda for the Rights of the Child and in the Europe 2020 Strategy. As signatory of the UN Convention, Romania is responsible for implementing specific recommendations that are regularly formulated by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. Many of the recommendations made to the Romanian State following the review of the most recent Country Report (submitted in 2009 at the 51st session, CRC/C/ROM/CO/4) are still waiting to be put into practice although less than a year remains until the UN Committee will make a new review.

By endorsing the Manifesto, initiative supporters commit to promote in the coming period public policies that will contribute to the:

  1. Provision of quality social services for child protection and for the prevention of child separation from family (through: preventive public policies; adequate funding to deploy at least one social worker in every community; no placement of children under three and children with disabilities in institutions);
  2. Social inclusion of disadvantaged Roma children (through: access to education, social and health services for Roma children);
  3. Prevention of violence against children (through measures in schools, in the society and related to the use of new technologies and the online environment, including by supporting parent education and positive discipline);
  4. Protection of children with disabilities (through: education, health and social protection services for them and by addressing discrimination and stigmatisation);
  5. Provision of quality health care to mother and child (through measures and funds that can help to reduce maternal and under-5 mortality rates);
  6. Development of services for children’s mental health (through public policies and access to medical and recovery services, including by setting up new mental health centres);
  7. Delivery of quality education to all children (through: adequate budgetary allocations; drop-out prevention; early education promotion);
  8. Strengthened cooperation between the public sector and non-governmental organisations (through: NGO involvement in public policy development and budgetary allocation decision making; by capitalising on the expertise of NGOs; by working together to develop specialised services for children);
  9. Enhanced consultation with and participation of children in decision making (through: strengthened Student Councils; access for children to useful and child-friendly information; authorities’ consultation with children);
  10. More efficient monitoring and management of child rights implementation (by setting up Children’s Ombudsman; mandating a specialised unit to oversee child rights application and relevant evaluation; choosing local and county agencies responsible for managing child rights fulfilment).

For more information about the Manifesto for Children, please contact Mihaela Manole at 021.311.75.96 and e-mail or Codruta Hedesiu at and e-mail



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