On 29 February 2016, representatives of 9 member organisations of the Ukrainian Child Rights Network (UCRN) announced the legal registration of the Network. Following almost two years of preparation with substantial support of the German Foreign Office and the German-Polish-Ukrainian Society the UCRN calls for all non-governmental organisations to unite in this network and create a strong advocate for the realisation of all children rights in Ukraine.
Today the Ukrainian state has a monopoly on almost all services related to children and families at risk. Needs analyses are not conducted and social services are neither developed nor adapted to the needs of the communities. Wherever NGOs are engaged the experiences for children and their families are much better as services become more effective. Exchanging know-how among NGOs and with state authorities will be an important aspect of the UCRN.
Thanks to an initiative of the UCRN a new law came into force on 21 February (Law № 936). It significantly enhances child protection measures in Ukraine, demanding, amongst other aspects, that any official measures with regards to a child be taken in consideration of the child’s best interest. This is a very important novelty for Ukraine and corresponds to the requirements of article 3 of the “UN Convention on the Rights of the Child” signed by Ukraine in 1991.