Due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on the 24th of February, many Ukrainians have been forced to flee to avoid the ongoing violence. A majority of those fleeing the violence are women and children, including unaccompanied minors, which has raised concerns about abuse, exploitation, trafficking, and missing children as they move between borders. Additionally, the influx of Ukrainian refugees could exacerbate children experiencing poverty and social inclusion as well as augment the number of children needing access to quality care.
In response to these concerns, Members of the European Parliament passed a resolution aimed at ensuring the protection of children and young people fleeing violence alongside a commitment to ensure their integration into host countries.
The resolution offers several recommendations to influence the EU ‘s response to this crisis. Notably, it references the European Child Guarantee and the related Action Plans as instruments for Member States to ensure Ukrainian children can access educational and health services as a means to reduce children experiencing poverty and social exclusion. Moreover, responding to the growing needs of Ukrainian children, the resolution aims to strengthen the Child Guarantee Action Plans by asking national coordinators to incorporate solutions for homelessness and housing exclusion into their plans, accompanied by an increase in funding for the European Child Guarantee, calling on all Member States to allocate more than the minimum 5 % of European Social Fund Plus resources to supporting activities under the European Child Guarantee.
Eurodiaconia welcomes the Parliament’s resolution and calls on Member States to urgently submit strong Child Guarantee Action Plans that adequately address the situation of Ukrainian children, as well as of other children from disadvantaged groups. In this respect, Eurodiaconia wants to welcome our members to “The Child Guarantee: How to Engage at the National Level?” taking place on 26 April, 10:00 – 12:00h (CET), where we will explore ways for our members to get involved in the design and implementation of the national action plans at the national level. We will also discuss the role of the national action plans in providing protection to Ukrainian children, and we will aim to develop a Child Guarantee Monitoring Group to influence child-related policies in the years to come.
To read more about the Parliament’s resolution and the recommendations, click here.
To access the European Commission’s website dedicated to the Child Guarantee initiative, visit their site here.
 The Child Guarantee is an initiative which aims to guarantee that the most vulnerable children in the European Union have access to healthcare, education, childcare, decent housing and adequate nutrition, to ensure realisation of child’s rights in Europe.