The Opening Doors for Europe’s Children campaign

‘Poverty, ethnic origin, nationality and disability are some of the key reasons for children’s institutionalisation’

From their website:

This aims to support national efforts to develop child protection systems that strengthen families and ensure high-quality family- and community-based alternative care for children, by leveraging EU funding and policy and building capacity in civil society.

It is a partnership between 5 international organisations and civil society across 16 European countries.

Institutional care has proven to be damaging both to children and to society.

Decades of research show that institutional care simply cannot provide an appropriate protection of children’s rights and the one-to-one care, love and attention a child needs to develop. To bring end to institutional care, States must address as much as possible the root causes leading to children entering care, prevent separation of children from their parents and develop quality alternatives to institutions.

In most cases, until today, children enter public care system for the wrong reasons. Poverty, ethnic origin, nationality and disability are some of the key reasons for children’s institutionalisation. Every child, regardless of age, gender, type and level of disability, migration status or any other personal characteristic or condition for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a nurturing environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding. There is no person or a group of persons who should be spending their lives in institutional care settings due to their characteristics or for whom long-term stay in an institution represent their best interests.

There are a few key elements of deinstitutionalisation strategies aimed to support the development of family and community-based services for children and parents and curb the damaging effects of institutional care...

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