Final international Conference of the project Empowering children/ young people with disabilities to improve responses to Child Abuse and Neglect was held on 26 January 2016 in Belgrade


On this occasion Georgette Mulheir, Lumos CEO, said: “Lumos is very proud of the Serbia self-advocates, who we have supported now for five years. We can celebrate this successful project which shows what children and young people with disabilities can achieve, give the support and opportunities. Their advice on Serbian child protection protocols, their innovative work as co-trainers of professionals, along with the booklet, will have a beneficial impact for children not only in Serbia but across the EU and elsewhere”.

The Serbian CRC director Milena Golic Ruzic said: “Rights of children and young people with disabilities are often threatened and in such situations usually others speak and decide for them. For this reason it is important that children and youth with disabilities are strengthened to self-advocate. This is especially important when we talk about the right of the child to be protected from abuse and neglect. Children and youth often don’t recognise these situations, they are silent about it and usually think that they are to blame for what is happening to them. As a first step in prevention, it is important to work with children and youth with disabilities to help them recognise what abuse and neglect is and how to protect themselves in such situations, having in mind that they are five times more likely to experience violence than children from the general population”.