MiRI - Minor's Right to Information in EU civil actions

Improving children’s right to information in cross-border civil cases

The child’s fundamental right to participate and express his/her views in proceedings concerning him/her is one of the guiding principles of the 1989 United Nation Convention on the Rights of the Child (as stated in art. 12), and it consists in one of the main preconditions to ensure that the child’s best interests are taken in primary considerations in all cases concerning them. The right of children to be heard in legal proceedings is also granted by the European Convention on the Protection of Human Rights (ECHR), as incorporated into art. 8 according to the interpretation given by the European Court of Human Rights. Accordingly, the same principles are contained in art. 24 of the EU Charter on Fundamental Rights, on the basis of which EU regulations, as Regulation (EC) No. 2201/2003, have explicitly stated that a child is to be given the opportunity to be heard in legal proceedings. However, the child’s fundamental right to participate and express his/her views in the aforementioned proceedings cannot be effectively exercised (either directly or indirectly) if the child does not receive adequate knowledge and support.

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foto youthlab

The Youthlab project puts the child in the centre of the justice process, not only as an object but as a participating subject. Justice professionals are trained in child-friendly communication skills through a child participation based model called Youthlab. Youthlab is an evidence-based practice developed in the Netherlands that involves (ex) detained youth and uses creative methods to increase the communicative skills of justice professionals. Consequently, children feel taken more seriously and feel more in control over their own case and life.

The Overall Objective is to contribute to the capacity building of juvenile justice professionals, in Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands, using a child participation based training model assuring increased child-participation during judicial proceedings and to roll out evidence-based supports for children involved in criminal judicial proceedings.

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logo supports sito

SUPPORTS involves a partnership from 3 EU countries that unite in the direction of creating comprehensive care for children leaving resident-type institutions. The project's objectives are:

  • to create skills in teams of professionals working in the protection system and the CRC for Holistic approach to the child as a preliminary step towards the development and implementation of sustainable follow-up plans
  • to enhance the competences and skills of professionals working in residential care settings through a CRC based methodology
  • to create an instrument based on a child-based and dynamic multidisciplinary approach
  • to promote the participation of children hosted in residential care facilities regarding decisions about their actual and future conditions
  • to promote the exchange of good practices in each country and among European partners.

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DFC 18 19 ChildRightsHelpdesk oranjeSince 2019 Defence for Children Italy has created the CHILD RIGHTS HELPDESK, a socio‑legal support unit for unaccompanied children on the move, with a coordinated set of actions on various levels.The Child Rights Helpdesk intends to develop an independent observatory to verify the state of implementation of guarantees and rights of unaccompanied children on the move through guidance, assistance, analysis, monitoring, training and awareness raising activities and through a constant dialogue with civil society and institutional and non-institutional actors working in this field.


Fairy Tales

The Hidden gender messages in fairy tales – Let’s read the fairy tales up-side down

The Project has duration 24 months and will be implemented in three EU Member States – Bulgaria, Greece and Italy. Its main objective  is preventing gender-based violence by disputing gender stereotypes from an early childhood in the EU. A gender analysis of 9 classical fairy tales for children will be implemented. 180 teachers from childcares for preschoolers from three EU countries will be trained about introducing the gender issues in pre-school children’s education (5-7 years old), using classical fairy tales.

Schermata 2019 02 26 alle 12.52.06

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Schermata 2020 05 15 alle 14.24.45

The project aims to guide and promote the adaptation of administrative proceedings to the specificities of the child. This approach is based on the child-friendly principles enshrined in the Guidelines of the Council of Europe for a child-friendly justice (for more information please see this link).The project aims to guide and promote the adaptation of administrative proceedings to the specificities of the child. This approach is based on the child-friendly principles enshrined in the Guidelines of the Council of Europe for a child-friendly justice (for more information please see this link). This project will enable the Network to have an overview of the implementation of child-friendly justice in European countries participating in the project (good practices and needs of professionals working with children in contact with the judicial system). It will also allow us to have an overview of good practices and needs of young people. Finally this project will bring an effective response to these needs and gaps. The whole project is based on a bottom-up approach. ​Thanks to these tools and to this project, professionals will effectively be aware of the child-friendly justice principles and of the way they can implement child-friendly justice, the way they can be trained or supported. 
STEP 1 : Needs analysis on Child-Friendly Justice - Voice of professionals​This questionnaire intends toGive an overview on how the administrative authorities/jurisdictions are adapted to children (from the first contact, through possible interviews with the child, to the final decision);Identify difficulties that may prevent the application of the child-friendly justice principles;Highlight professionals’ good practices on the implementation of child-friendly justice​STEP 2 : Needs analysis on Child-Friendly Justice - Voice of children​DCI believes that young people have their say in the issues that concern them and is a strong advocate of the right to participation enshrined in the International Convention on the Rights of the Child. As advocates for youth rights, DCI acts on a daily basis to give a voice to youth and it seems essential to include youth in this process of change and adaptation of the justice system.
This second step consists in establishing an analysis of the needs and recommendations coming directly from children who have been or are in contact with the judicial system in their country. The aim is to get children to talk about their experiences, the obstacles they have encountered, and the positive aspects they have found in their legal proceedings. It will then be a question of identifying the good practices, the elements to be improved, the expectations of the young people themselves.
​FINAL STEP 3 : Practical toolkit for professionals​This last step will finalize the project and will gather responses to the needs identified during the first two phases of the project among youth workers and young people. It will formulate recommendations and provide solutions to the problems and shortcomings identified.
Thanks to this tool, professionals will have a more practical vision of child-friendly justice that often remains unknown or too abstract for professionals in the field. They will then be able to better understand the principles of child-friendly justice, how to include them in their daily practice and become real agents of change.​​PARTNERSThis project is implemented in 7 European countries thanks to the members of this Network.

2013 | ® Defence for Children International Italia

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