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Friday, January 27, 2006

EIDHR Project in Syria: the Childcare training Programme

Social Affairs, Human Rights, Co-op & Development,

News Childcare training programme is the first project to be launched in Syria under the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights Programme (EIDHR).

The Delegation of the European Commission to Syria is “pleased” to see the launch of a training programme for child-minders to address children in out-of-home care systems who are often vulnerable to abuse, neglect and exploitation, said the Head of Delegation, Frank Hesske, ahead of the public launch of the EU-funded programme on 14 January at the Cham Palace under the patronage of the Minister of Social Affairs and Labour, Dr. Diala Alhaj Aref. The project is the first to be launched in Syria under the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights Programme, which was created by the EU in 1994 and spans the world, including Europe. It was introduced in Syria last year. The 3-year project, which will be implemented by the Syrian Arab Association for SOS Children’s Villages with a contribution of € 80,000 from the EU, will provide training for SOS mothers and other childminders in Syria who provide a nurturing and safe environment for children who no longer have parents to care for them. The training is developed to address the child’s right for a safe childhood that would help provide a foundation for self-reliance later in life. In its first year, the project will involve 60 participants, including 40 SOS personnel and 20 from other organisations that work with children. At the end of the year, the project will be developed to a full-fledged childcare training centre that will offer: training for child-minders working on out-of-home childcare systems; training for mangers and administrative staff involved in out of home childcare systems such as orphanage managers, social workers and SOS Children’s Village directors and youth leaders; and parenting education for families to enhance their capacities to raise their children. The project is one of six that were selected by the Delegation of the European Commission to Syria under its first launch of the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR). The other five projects, which have yet to be officially launched, include the establishment of a day-care centre in Qamishli to assist abandoned children and try to reintegrate them into school, and training programmes on human rights for people with disability and other vulnerable groups, including Palestinian refugees, with special focus on women and children. The EIDHR programme was created by an initiative of the European Parliament in 1994 to help strengthen local civil society and back their contribution to the democratic process. The programme was introduced in Syria through a public Call for Proposals in June 2005 with a total budget of € 500,000. A new Call for Proposals under the EIDHR programme is expected to be launched in Syria before the summer of 2006. The Delegation of the European Commission to Syrian is responsible for managing official relations between Syria and the European Commission. One of its main activities is to oversee a bilateral co-operation project portfolio of over € 252 million in support of the Syrian Government’s modernisation process, including areas such as higher education, private sector development, environment, tourism, energy, telecommunication, health and the development of civil society.

Source :  European Commission


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