Funded by IKEA Turkey and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), “Child Friendly Cities Project” was carried out between 2014-2015 in cooperation with World Academy for Local Government and Democracy (WALD), Union of Municipalities of Turkey (UMT), and United Cities and Local Governments Middle East And West Asia Section (UCLG-MEWA). The project was run in Mersin and Manisa Metropolitan Municipalities, Bitlis, Giresun, Kırklareli/Lüleburgaz, Yüreğir, Ankara/Mamak, Erzurum/İspir, İzmir/Bornova and Şanlıurfa/Eyyübiye Municipalities with the aim of developing child friendly policies and programs and building child friendly places.

In the light of results of community-based city analyses, action plans were formulated in order to support the participation of children in city decisions and improve the playfields within the towns they are living in. Community-based city analyses were performed in each city by the young volunteering advocates for children. The results concerning the participation and citizenship titles were below average in all cities. Results under participation and citizenship titles indicated that the participation and opinion expression regarding the city decision, municipality budget and children-related projects were quite low among mainly children, teenagers and parents. Therefore, it has been decided to support the reinforcement of children’s councils in 9 cities. As per the decision, “Training on Children’s Rights and Participation” was held in Istanbul between 22-25 June 2015 with the participation of child and adult representatives from seven cities as well as adult representatives from one city. Annex-1 contains the list of participants.

The aim of training was to increase the capacity of existing children’s councils and encourage their establishment in cities where there is no children’s council. The Training Program was planned in an interactive way according to these aims. At the beginning of the program, child and adult participants were informed about the participation, rights and children’s councils; and then they were requested to make a city plan of their own at the end and turn it into an action plan. 

“Convention on the Rights of the Child” as adopted by United Nations General Assembly on November 20, 1989 can be downloaded here.