The first meeting of the working group for early development of children, a special body of the Children's Rights Council of the Government of the Republic of Serbia, was held on 15.10.2018. in Belgrade. The working group was formed by the decision of the Children's Rights Council on March 1, 2018, in order to achieve policy coordination at the national level.
The chairman of the special working group for early child development is Anamarija Vicek, state secretary in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development. The working group has eight members, and in addition to the representatives of the Council for the Rights of the Child from the relevant departments, one of the permanent members is Jasmina Mikovic from Praxis, the President of the MODS Board of Directors. At the first meeting of the working group, as representatives of the MODS, Sasa Stefanovic, Director of MODS and Jasmina Mikovic took part.
The first meeting was dedicated to discussing the strategic priorities in the area of early development of children and the manner of implementation of the Call for Action - Joint Message from the Ministers of the Government of the Republic of Serbia - support to children in their early childhood and their families. At the same time, opportunities have been considered to improve the coordination of the activities of various departments and other actors in the field of early development.
In the following period, the working group will work to initiate measures for the development of a comprehensive and coherent policy targeting early childhood, including the integration of child support policies at an early age into the National Action Plan for Children, as well as defining recommendations for the realization of important social indicators in the area of child support in early childhood.
Why is a special body of the Children's Rights Council for dealing with early development formed?
Early development is one of the priorities of the Government of the Republic of Serbia and is recognized in key national and international documents such as the United Nations Convention on the rights of the child, the Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, the Objectives of Sustainable Development, the employment and social policy reform Programme, the Action Plan for Chapter 23 and common European Guidelines on the transition from institutional to community-based care. Considering the importance of this period in the development of each individual, as well as the fact that every child has the right to a full realization of his potential, it is necessary to systematically provide support to the child and the family, which will be holistic and complete. In order to achieve this, mechanisms at the national and local levels should facilitate the coordination of programs and services. The existing legislative and strategic framework for supporting children in different sectors (health, education, social protection) needs to consolidate, supplement and ensure its implementation through adequate funding.