Her Excellency Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, Former President of Malta, has been elected President of Eurochild, a children’s rights advocacy network with 176 members in 34 countries. The elections took place during the meeting of the Eurochild General Assembly held in Brussels.
“During my time both as Minister for the Family and Social Solidarity, and as President of Malta, child participation was always at the centre of my endeavours. For example, the Malta Foundation for the Wellbeing of Society established a Children’s Hub, the President’s Secret Garden and the Children’s Council and the Young Person’s Council. I’m delighted to see child participation so central to the work of Eurochild. I’d like to use my time as President of this prestigious organisation to establish child participation as common practice across Europe, and to lead the way globally. I also intend to help Eurochild strengthen its ties with international organisations and the Council of Europe. By working with its 47 member states and their respective Parliamentary Delegations, Eurochild can bring children’s rights into the core of Parliaments across the European region”, said newly-elected President of Eurochild.
Her Excellency Coleiro-Preca (President of Malta April 2014 – April 2019) dedicated her life to the social well-being of the most vulnerable in society, and was influential for effective changes in the social policies of Malta. During her term as Minister for Family and Social Solidarity of Malta, she initiated a variety of reforms in social housing, social benefits to support children and families. Coleiro Preca introduced child participation, as a process, as a model and as a methodology. She overhauled the welfare system and tabled several laws before Parliament, including the Act on the Protection of children, using an innovative bottom-up approach.
Eurochild is an advocacy network of organisations working with and for children throughout Europe, striving for a society that respects the rights of children. Bringing expertise from its membership, the network influences policies, builds internal capacities, facilitates mutual learning and exchanges practice and research to support the children’s rights sector.