ChildPact’s contribution to the PABSEC Recommendation on Child Protection in the BSEC Member States

In March 2012 the PABSEC Educational, Cultural and Social Affairs Committee met in Sofia (Bulgaria) to discuss Recommendation 127/2012 on Child Protection in the BSEC Member States.

Invited to speak at the plenary of the Committee, ChildPact Secretary General Mirela Oprea showed that the number of children living in difficult circumstances is increasing throughout the wider Black Sea area. As acknowledged by Recommendation 41/1999 (on The Legal Framework for Child Protection in the BSEC Member Countries), child protection challenges confronting BSEC Member States are similar. She emphasized that over the past twenty years, BSEC Member States dedicated substantial efforts and funding to reform child protection systems.

Governments, donors and civil society focused on policy and legislative frameworks, institutional capacity to implement reforms and development of community based social services. However, reform efforts are now at an impasse. ChildPact’s Secretary General argued that the next phase for child protection reform should be based on a regional effort to scale up successful services and to expand expert cooperation to build jointly on lessons learnt. As the singular leadership entity in the Black Sea Region, BSEC can play an enhanced role in this next phase. Investing in the future social capital of its Member States is a prerequisite for economic growth and political and social stability across the region.