Int’l conference highlights good practices for refugees

Int’l conference highlights good practices for refugees

Int’l conference highlights good practices for refugees

This photo by Kerem Yücel shows a Support to Life (STL) member at field work in Turkey’s Harran.

The final declaration of an international conference in Ankara has outlined global recommendations for the protection of refugee children, portraying a healthy environment for the displaced minors and showcasing good practices.

“A holistic approach combining child protection and social protection enables actualization of child rights and increases child welfare,” read the statement released after the three-day “Meet, Share, Inspire: International Conference of Good Practices on Refugee Protection” in late September.

Co-organized by Support to Life (STL) and the Directorate General of Migration Management (GİGM), with support from European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) and Diakonie Katastophenhilfe (DKH), the conference brought together 23 panelists from 11 countries spanning five continents.

The declaration suggested design and implementation of non-discriminatory child protection policies.

“Irrespective of their country of origin or their ethnicity, all children must be protected against risks and their access to related mechanisms must be ensured,” it read.

It also said a code of conduct for institutions working with children should be adopted to avoid risks of any harm.

Establishing a ministry of children would also contribute to rights of children, it said.

“Prejudices can be overcome, and social cohesion can be reinforced through the design, implementation and dissemination of good practices,” the statement said.
“Anti-immigrant and anti-refugee sentiment is on the rise in Turkey as it becomes increasingly legitimate to voice such prejudices. It is paramount to tackle these misperceptions so that activities can be implemented and policy changes can be made.”

Mehmet Sinan Yıldız, deputy director of directorate for the GİGM; Claudia Amaral, the head of the European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Office in Turkey; Michael Hansmann, the EU representative to the Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe, and Sema Genel Karaosmanoğlu, the STL director, were among the keynote speakers at the conference.