Children: People of today

In community social pediatrics, the child is at the centre of the approach because, as Janusz Korczak put it in the 1920s, children are not the people of tomorrow; they are people of today. In order to improve children’s health and quality of life, it goes without saying that we must build communities with them that are stronger, fairer, more supportive and more respectful. We must therefore empower children, adults and the stakeholders around them based on the Convention on the Rights of the Child. This enables children to be the primary agents of change in their lives and in their communities.

So every child can succeed

The Convention on the Rights of the Child, ratified by Canada in 1991, brings together the basic conditions for all children to have the right to develop their potential and succeed. Since 2006, the Convention has been an integral part of the community social pediatrics model, thanks to the perseverance of Hélène (Sioui) Trudel and the social innovation projects created and implemented by her. This model involves cooperation with the legal community and enhances actions by facilitating access to justice.‚-1.jpg

Why are the rights of the child so important?

In vulnerable communities, an unmet need often hides a right that has been violated. It is important that all of the child’s fundamental rights are respected at every stage—in the assessment of their health, the orientation of services, the implementation of the action plan and the provision of support. To do this, the child must have a voice and play a part in the decision-making process.

Rights at the heart of the care model

The Convention has served as a guide for teams that use mediation, conflict prevention and amicable dispute resolution to overcome impasses and protect the child. This model involves cooperation with the legal community and enhances actions by facilitating access to justice.

The seven key principles of the rights of the child

1. All children are born equal before the law. +-

2. The child’s best interests must be the primary consideration in all decisions concerning them. +-

3. The child is truly involved in decision-making in order to enjoy their civil rights and freedoms. +-

4. The child grows up in a loving family supported by the entire community. +-

5. The right to health at all stages of development. +-

6. The right to learn, play and discover the world. +-

7. The right to be protected. +-

First Nations situation


The community social pediatrics model