A good example of a European campaign

Last month I was in Brussels running and advocacy workshop for Eurochild with their European campaign on Early Childhood Development.

I have had the good fortune to be involved with this European campaign, involving now 11 different countries, since it began back in 2000. It has been fascinating to see Eurochild, and its international partners develop their advocacy within the European institutions to promote the need for investment in the first three years, and to see tangible changes arising, such as the Child Guarantee. This was part of what they describe as the top-down advocacy, and these changes have enabled opportunities for advocacy at the country level.

I have been far more involved though in supporting the 11 countries from both East and West Europe, as well as one country outside of the European Union, to develop their own advocacy campaigns at national level, promoting the importance of Early Childhood Development.

It was great, when we all met in Brussels last month, to hear how the national campaigns have developed, admittedly with incredibly little funding, on this important issue. This is part of what they describe as the bottom-up advocacy. I know from my previous work with Eurochild involved with their Opening Doors campaign for de-institutionalisation that it is this activity at national level that can do so much to help advocacy at the European level really to stand out.

This campaign is a great example of a European campaign exploring the synergy between advocacy at the European level and at national level, and it has been superb to be part of this campaign in recent years. Much achieved to date but so much more to do!


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