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European Resource Center

On June 8, regional representatives of the Eastern Europe and Central Asia have participated in a session organized by the ECPAT International, on a Regional Strategy on Ending Sexual Exploitation of Children in hotel Wyndham, Bogota, Colombia. At the session, the participants have discussed the summaries of the members outcomes since the last regional consultation, updates on the regional progress and have gotten the introduction on the regional programs. The regional priorities have been identified and updated and network wide priorities have been recapped as it was agreed in the ECPAT Strategic Framework.

On the second day of the International Summit on Child Protection in Travel and Tourism, taking place on June 7, in Bogota, Colombia, the panel discussion has continued with following topics:

  • The private sector's role in child protection in travel and tourism;
  • The role of law enforcement agencies in combating travelling child sex offenders (TCSO) and the inter-sectoral cooperation.

In the second part of day, there will be 8 concurrent working sessions, with following topics:

  • Strenghtening awareness and improving the reporting systems for suspected cases of sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism;
  • Sports events and the protection of children from sexual exploitation;
  • Child victims of trafficking in the context of travel and tourism;
  • International voluntourism - risks for children in travel and tourism;
  • The need for standards of child protection across the travel and tourism industry;
  • Partnerships between civil society organisations and the private sector for the protection of children in travel and toursim;
  • Legal frameworks and their implementation;
  • The role of the media in the protection of children in travel and tourism.

The International Summit on Child Protection in Travel and Tourism is taking place on June 6 and 7, in Bogota, Colombia.

On June 6, the topics for technical sessions were:

  • Multi-stakeholder approach towards ending the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism;
  • The challenges of multi-stakeholder approach in addressing the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism.

During the panel discussions, following topics were addressed:

  • The role of governments in child protection in travel and tourism;
  • The impact of digital environments on child protection in travel and tourism;
  • From child protection to respecting children's rights: Human Rights Impact Assessments in Travel and Tourism.

Representatives of the International Forum of Solidarity – EMMAUS met with the Minister of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina Mr. Dragan Mektic on June 5, 2018 with the aim to discuss the current migration situation in BiH and the partner role of IFS-EMMAUS to BiH institutions in this process. The meeting was conveyed as follow-up to the recent signing of the three-partite Protocol of Understanding between the BiH Ministry of Security, UNHCR and IFS-EMMAUS, on the accommodation and assistance of vulnerable asylum seekers in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Furthermore, IFS-EMMAUS has also been recognized as the partner to BiH institutions in the recently adopted Action Plan of Emergency Measures for the accommodation and assistance to migrants, especially children, whose numbers have been increasing in BiH in the past few months, whereby IFS-EMMAUS once again expressed their readiness to actively cooperate with and assist the BiH government on the provision of needed assistance to migrants (incl. food, sundries, hygienic supplies and primary medical care), in accordance with international law and humanitarian standards, but also with full respect of BiH national interests and security of its citizens.

During the meeting, participants explored the possibility of additional – more adequate accommodation capacities/facilities in Bihać and Velika Kladuša, where IFS-EMMAUS would further be an active partner to the government in the provision of needed services to these migrants, especially children and unaccompanied minors.

The International Summit to address the protection of children from sexual exploitation in travel and tourism (SECTT) will be convened on June 3-8 in Bogota, Colombia. The Summit will be hosted by the Government of Colombia, which has taken a number of innovative child protection measures in the travel and tourism sector. The event will bring together world-wide leaders representing governments, international and regional multilateral organisations, the private sector, law enforcement agencies, child rights experts and non-governmental organisations to raise international attention to SECTT and provide opportunity to exchange good practices and experiences. It will explore accelerated actions for implementation of the recommendations of the Global Study on Sexual Exploitation of Children in Travel and Tourism, which are aligned to the Sustainable Development Goals and provide a roadmap to address this worldwide challenge. At the Summit, Ms Ajla Omerbegovic is attending on behalf of International Forum of Solidarity EMMAUS. A Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regional meeting will also be held on Sunday 3 June in Bogota with primary focus on sexual exploitation of children (SEC) in the context of conflict, post-conflict, humanitarian crisis and refugee/migration settings.


A Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regional meeting on Sunday 3 June was held in Bogota with primary focus on sexual exploitation of children (SEC) in the context of conflict, post-conflict, humanitarian crisis and refugee/migration settings.

In particular, during this meeting the members and partners of the ECPAT from the region prepared one of the technical sessions to be held during the International Assembly. This session will be held on Wednesday 6 June, 08:00-09:30. Participants of the preparatory meeting on Sunday will then take the lead in raising awareness amongst the wider ECPAT membership on this increasingly important issue.

The meeting on Sunday 3 June was divided in three main parts:

  • A session for participants to share their experiences, knowledge and country peculiarities with regards to SEC in the humanitarian context;
  • A brief session on Child Safeguarding Policies and Procedures, led by ECPAT International; and
  • A working session dedicated to collectively prepare for the technical session on Wednesday.

5-6 JUNE

The 7th ECPAT International Assembly is taking place in Bogotá, Colombia on June 5 and 6. The Assembly is an opportunity to address the constantly shifting landscape of child sexual exploitation and how ECPAT and members can evolve as a movement to meet these emerging challenges.


On 7 June, the ECPAT network and its members are going to organize an International Summit on Child Protection in Travel and Tourism, where participants, especially MENA members, will present the issues that their regions are dealing with regarding the exploitation of children in tourism, with the grand focus on sexual exploitation.


On 8 June, multiple parallel regional meetings will be held with the topic on Regional Consultation on Ending the Sexual Exploitation of Children (Eastern Europe and Central Asia - EECA and South Asia - SA Region). After the consultative meetings, an Annual General Meeting with all present members will be held, where the general conclusions, proposals and amendments will be presented, as a summary on what was done in previous summits, meetings and consultations.

With this Meeting, the 7th ECPAT International Assembly will officially be closed.

On May 28-29, A Supplementary Human Dimension Meeting in organization of OSCE on the topic of “Child Trafficking – From Prevention to Protection” is taking place in Vienna. The topic of one of the side-events of this meeting is “Victim-Centered, Systematic and Integrated Approach on Preventing the Trafficking of Children”, and on behalf of IFS-EMMAUS, Mrs Amela Efendic will present current new trends on trafficking in human beings/children in Western Balkan. In this event, current trends needs and vulnerabilities of children in Balkan and Mediterranean region as observed by front line professionals and NGOs will be discussed as well. The focus will be at systematic and integrated approaches in prevention, as well as on good practice initiatives and partnerships between NGOs and Public Sectors. The side event will conclude with an interactive workshop where the participants will collaborate in order to develop a strategy and messaging addressing specific root causes of vulnerability among unaccompanied children in the region today.

The second day of the Fourth Annual Conference on the Status of Human Rights and Freedoms in Bosnia and Herzegovina, organized by the OSCE Mission to BiH, representatives of the Ministry of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Mr. Dragan Mektic), the International Forum of Solidarity- EMMAUS (Ms. Amela Efendic) and The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees - UNHCR in Bosnia and Herzegovina (Ms. Anne-Christine Eriksson) signed the "Protocol for the Accommodation of Vulnerable Asylum Seekers in the IFS-EMMAUS Acceptance Center". In this Protocol, users are considered as vulnerable asylum seekers if they are in the following categories (one or more of them): children accompanied by one or both parents, other family members or guardians, unaccompanied children or separated children, elderly and infirm persons, ill persons , persons with disabilities, pregnant women, nursing children, parents with minors, persons with reduced intellectual capacity, victims of torture and trauma, rape or other psychological, physical and sexual violence. This Protocol ensures accommodation and assistance for up to 100 migrants - vulnerable asylum seekers in the following period, which includes food (three meals a day in accordance with prescribed nutritional values), hygienic supplies, clothing, footwear and primary medical care and protection, in accordance with domestic laws and international humanitarian law.

Ms. Amela Efendic, Expert Advisor at International Forum of Solidarity -EMMAUS Office in Sarajevo and CEO of the European Resource Center for the Prevention of Trafficking in Human Beings and Other Forms of Exploitation and SOS line for reporting inappropriate content online – Sigurno dijete will, on behalf of IFS – EMMAUS, attend the Fourth Annual Conference on the Status of Human Rights and Freedoms in Bosnia and Herzegovina, organized by the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina on 23 and 24 May, 2018.

After the opening speeches, the participants discussed the progress in the implementation of the conclusions from the previous conferences, as well as the New Challenges, as well as the current status of acceptance/assistance to refugees and migrants in BiH.

IFS-EMMAUS is recognized as one of the partners of State institutions in the Action Plan for the Purpose of Ensuring Accommodation Capacities for Vulnerable Categories and Other Migrants, and as such, at this conference,  will be signing the Agreement on Cooperation with State.

The 18th High-level Alliance against Trafficking in Persons conference “Everyone Has a Role: How to Make a Difference Together” is taking on 23–24 April 2018, Hofburg, Vienna.

Mrs Amela Efendic, Expert Advisor of IFS-EMMAUS, which is a part of Emmaus International and Emmaus Europe organisation, and CEO of the European Resource Center for Prevention of Trafficking ih Human Beings and Other Forms of Exploitation, participates as a panelist at the conference with the delegation from Bosnia and Herzegovina, led by BiH State Coordinator for the Prevention of Trafficking in Human Beings.

The focus of this year’s high-level conference is to promote the importance of inclusive partnerships to further enhance the coherence of anti-trafficking efforts and strengthen co-operation at the local, national, regional and international level.

The conference will examine existing, more traditional anti-trafficking partnerships, along with the benefits of innovative co-operation modalities which often remain ‘invisible’ in formalized multi-disciplinary frameworks. A special emphasis will also be placed on new actors whose engagement would bring added value to anti-trafficking responses. LIVE STREAM




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