Important to be informed: The 21st ENOC Conference gets underway

19 September 2017

Children’s Commissioners from across Europe are meeting in Helsinki today as the 21st ENOC Conference gets underway.

This year, the conference covers comprehensive relationship and sexuality education: implementing the right of children to be informed.

Involving young people

Young people always get the chance to contribute in some way to the ENOC conference. They do this through a project run by ENYA, the European Network of Young Advisers.

This year's ENYA project is RIO, which stands for Respect, Information, Opinion. It allowed young people across Europe to consider issues of identity and relationships, and their views will be presented at the conference by some of the young people involved in the project.

Our involvement with ENYA

Our office was involved in helping some of Scotland's young people take part in ENYA this year: Youth Ambassadors from the Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre (Perth & Kinross. These young people aim to raise awareness of inequality in society, and receive training in issues such as:

  • gender stereotypes and inequality,
  • sexualisation, and
  • online and social media safety and sexual violence.

As part of the RIO project, the Youth Ambassadors:

  • participated in 5 sessions including 2 full day sessions,
  • used a series of activities including brainstorming, scenarios and videos to raise discussion points to explore the issues of identity and relationships and how technologies can affect the development of these in young people, and
  • contacted a range of policy makers to look at how they were ensuring young people’s rights were being met.

Visiting Paris

Young people involved in RIO went to Paris as part of their involvement with the ENYA project. Two of them, Jack and Georgia, blogged for us about their experiences there.

Read Jack's blog about his experiences.

Read Georgia's blog about her experiences.

About ENOC

The European Network of Ombudspersons for Children, or ENOC, is a network of 42 independent children's rights institutions from 34 different countries. It aims to:

  • encourage the fullest possible implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child,
  • support collective lobbying for children’s rights,
  • to share information, approaches and strategies, and
  • to promote the development of effective independent offices for children.

Each year, ENOC hosts a conference on an important issue in children's rights, where it formally adopts a position on that issue. Past position statements include:

Visit ENOC's website.