03/05/2024 - 11:13

We held the first network meeting titled “Post-Disaster Solidarity and Activities in the Field of Children’s Rights” on June 16th in Istanbul together with the participation of the organizations active in the field of children's rights.

Çocuk Hakları Özelinde Afet Sonrası Dayanışma ve Faaliyetler toplantısından bir görüntü

From the Haklara Destek Program organizations Minus 25 Association, Solidarity for Equality Association, Migration and Humanitarian Aid Foundation, Modern Art and Ecological Life Association, Nirengi Association, Children First Association, Colorful Hopes Association, Sulukule Volunteers Association, and Youth Re-autonomy Foundation of Turkey participated in the meeting. Additionally, Bilgi University Child Studies Unit (ÇoÇa), Association of Sports and Body Movement for Social Empowerment (Bomovu), and Tarlabaşı Community Center also accepted our invitation and contributed to the meeting.

Çocuk Hakları Özelinde Afet Sonrası Dayanışma ve Faaliyetler toplantısından bir görüntüThe meeting opened with speeches of Heinrich Böll Stiftung Turkey Director Dawid D. Bartelt and Hafıza Merkezi Haklara Destek Program Field Coordinator Hülya Kurt. Following the opening speeches, which emphasized the importance of solidarity and cooperation in the struggle for democracy, we moved on to the panel on Post-Earthquake Activities in the Field of Children's Rights. Ezgi Koman from FISA Child Rights Center and Barış Ekinci from Children's Studies Association (ÇocukÇA) representing Diyarbakır Child Rights Oriented Crisis Management Network participated in the panel. Koman and Ekinci spoke about how and in what direction their post-disaster work has evolved. They talked about the experiences of the organizations which have swiftly organized and began working by establishing working groups and structuring and implementing divisions of labor. They also emphasized how these organizations have strengthened each other. Following Koman and Ekinci’s presentations, the floor was opened to everyone’s contribution and the participants shared their experiences with each other for the rest of the panel. The organizations stated that because they prioritize the best interest and well-being of the child, they attend trainings, develop modules, and stay in contact with social workers and psychologists. The violations that make working in this field difficult were also shared.

Çocuk Hakları Özelinde Afet Sonrası Dayanışma ve Faaliyetler toplantısında atölye çalışması görüntüsü

In the second session, crisis management and sustainability issues were discussed in a dialogical manner open to everyone’s participation and contribution. Mansur Seyitoğlu from the Istanbul branch of the Turkish Association of Social Workers (Shuder) and Ahmet Özdemir from the Health and Social Service Workers’ Trade Union (SES) shared the experiences and observations of social workers and physicians in the field. Children's rights were discussed based on issues such as access to the right to health, discrimination, poverty, and security. The session ended with a discussion on the difficulties and advantages of carrying out activities together.

Importance of being in close communication and informing others about the work carried out in each organization was emphasized during the session focusing on the difficulties caused by the lack of communication/coordination between organizations. Additionally, solidarity between rights-based organizations and humanitarian organizations and the important, facilitating and challenging aspects of cooperation with local governments and public institutions were also discussed.

In the final session, the participating organizations were divided into three groups and engaged in a mapping activity guided by the discussions in the previous two sessions. They deliberated together on potential partnerships and rapports as well as the possible conditions of establishing these relations. 

We would like to thank all the organizations, panelists, and guests who have spared their time to  participate in the meeting as well as for their valuable contributions.