Start to Talk in Bulgaria: first round table

Start to Talk Sofia, Bulgaria 22 November 2022
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Start to Talk in Bulgaria: first round table

The Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport (EPAS) and the Bulgarian Ministry of Youth and Sports co-organised the first national round table in the framework of the Start to Talk project. The event was held on 22 November in Sofia with the aim of building the foundations of the roadmap for an effective implementation of the child safeguarding in sport policy and the system of Child Safeguarding Officer (CSO) roles at national level.

The meeting was opened by Peter Butchkov, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports of Bulgaria, and Irena Guidikova, Head of the Children’s Rights and Sport Values Department of the Council of Europe.

Elena Casero, Senior Project Officer at EPAS, presented the Start to Talk project and the roadmap development methodology. Petya Koseva, Bulgarian National Co-ordinator for Start to Talk and Senior Advisor at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, explained the involvement of Bulgaria in the project. Petya Dimitrova, national expert for the project, also took part in the meeting.

Desk research on the national child safeguarding policy, the roadmap design process and the setting up of CSO roles in sport were presented by Bruno Avelar Rosa and Miguel Nery, international experts from Qantara Sports. Laura Whapham, Senior Consultant at the NSPCC Child Protection in Sport Unit, analysed the system of CSO roles in the UK. Participants were then invited to share ideas on how to improve the efficiency of the child safeguarding in sport policy, and held an exchange of views on the setting up of CSO roles in Bulgaria.

Following this meeting, the EPAS Secretariat and the national co-ordinator will designate Core Group members and initiate consultations on the draft national roadmap. The outcomes of this work will be presented to the steering committee of Start to Talk in Bulgaria.

Start to Talk assists national authorities responsible for sport in the production of country-specific roadmaps for an effective development and implementation of child safeguarding in sport policies, including concrete steps to set up Child Safeguarding Officer (CSO) roles in sport.