Early last week, Eurodiaconia organised a webinar for its members on child and family poverty and the impact of COVID-19. Eurodiaconia welcomes the proposal to develop a “Child Guarantee” as part of the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights and will take an active role along with its members to further promote its implementation at the national and local level. Based on the work and experience of our members, the webinar aimed to further discuss the topic and to provide room for collegial exchange. “What do we want the Child Guarantee to look like in practice and what challenges do we see?” was the main question we tried to answer along with our participants.
Also, in light of the current crisis, we can only emphasise what UNICEF’s Executive Director Henrietta Fore said: “Children are the hidden victims of COVID-19 pandemic”. Millions of children in Europe already had difficult childhoods before the crisis hit. In Ukraine, for example, where Covid-19 has already exposed existing problems: extra 6.3 million people are likely to fall into poverty as a result of this crisis, 1.4 million of whom are children. Absolute poverty is likely to increase from 27% to 44%. Child poverty is expected to rise from 33% to 51%.
How can we best ensure that those children are protected in the short term and continue our joint fight for a better future for all children? We were grateful to have 4 excellent contributions from members from Norway, Hungary, Iceland, and Ukraine, focusing on children living in precarious family situations.
To find out more about our members’ experience, please have a look at the meeting minutes.