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Barnahus Slovenia project achievements presented at the closing conference

On 4 May 2022, the closing conference of the joint EU Reform – Council of Europe project to Support the implementation of Barnahus in Slovenia (phase II) took place in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The event offered a platform to take stock of the project’s achievements since its beginning in 2018 and since the launch of its first phase in 2017. The Barnahus in Slovenia was officially launched in May 2022.

The project has supported the Slovenian Government in establishing and operating their first Barnahus for child victims of sexual abuse in line with international standards and promising European practices This has been achieved through a series of activities under three main pillars, which were presented at the conference: legal, policy and institutional review; capacity building and training of professionals working with and for children; and awareness raising of child sexual abuse in Slovenia.

In his welcoming remarks, Mr Marjan Dikaučič, Minister of Justice of Slovenia, stated that violence against children is unacceptable, and that this project is crucial in protecting some of the most vulnerable members of Slovenian society. Ms Jernej Jug Jerše, Head of the European Commission Representation in Slovenia, applauded the co-operation of the Slovenian Ministry of Justice, the Council of Europe, the European Commission, and the Norway Grants in the Barnahus. Finally, Ms Regina Jensdottir, Head of the Children’s Rights Division of the Council of Europe, underlined the importance of taking on the transformational journey to set up a Barnahus in Slovenia, changing mindsets, legislation, and policy, and to bring Slovenian practice in line with Council of Europe and United Nations standards.

The conference also offered a platform for child consultation experts and children themselves to present activities that had been carried out to promote and enhance child participation within Barnahus throughout the project. Furthermore, a visit to the Barnahus premises and a roundtable with young delegates, who had been involved in the project, was organised. The roundtable allowed the young delegates to share their views about what Barnahus means to them, its challenges and what they hope to see going forward.

 Bragi Guðbrandsson, Member of the UN Committee of the Rights of the Child, address on lessons learnt and keys to success on Barnahus (video message)

Ljubljana 4 May 2022
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