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Center for the Human Rights of Children

February 2010
In This Issue
Protecting Haiti's Children
Resources for Children in Disasters
New Advisory Board
Survey of Loyola Faculty
Upcoming Center Events
Dear Friends,

We dedicate this issue of our newsletter to the children of Haiti. Children and youth affected by the earthquake will need help overcoming physical and emotional trauma they have suffered, and will require long-term, ongoing support and care. We urge you to help and support the citizens of Haiti in any form you can.

We invite you to learn more about international guidelines and resources to assist and protect children during times of disaster. In addition, we are pleased to welcome our new advisory board, and hope you join us at one or more of our upcoming events.

Katherine Kaufka Walts
Haitifeet Protecting the Rights of Children in Haiti

The earthquake in Haiti and the humanitarian relief response has drawn attention to one of the world's poorest countries, located just 600 miles off the coast of the United States. Nearly half of Haiti's population is younger than 18 years old, and it is estimated that two million children are affected by the disaster. The devastating aftermath of Haiti's earthquake has left thousands of children separated from their families.

The Center joins international organizations, including UNICEF, Save the Children, UNHRC, Better Care Network, and others in advocating for the resources necessary to meet international standards for ethical care and interventions for separated and unaccompanied children. Sufficient efforts should be in place to locate, trace and reunify children with their families to the maximum extent possible prior to any other permanent solution being pursued. 
Relief agencies on the ground are currently working to establish registration and reunification processes for separated and unaccompanied children. International standards and guidelines are in place to reduce the risk of children falling victim to exploitation of vulnerable children and families, as well as being separated from family and loved ones that may be able to provide ongoing care.
Interdisciplinary Resources for Children in Disasters

Inter-agency Guidelines for Separated/Unaccompanied Minors, International Committee of the Red Cross, UNICEF, UNHRC, IRC, Save the Children, World Vision International

Child Protection Working Group Guiding Principles: Unaccompanied and Separated Children Following the Haiti Earthquake, January 2010, Better Care Network

Guidance Note for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support: Haiti Earthquake Emergency Response, Inter-agency Standing Committee

Protecting Children from Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Violence in Times of Disaster & Emergency Situations, ECPAT International (also available in Spanish, Arabic, and French)

Psychological First Aid, Field Operations Guide, National Child Traumatic Stress Network

Pediatric Education in Disasters Manual: A Course of the "Helping the Children" Program, American Academy of Pediatrics

If you have suggestions for additional resources, please contact David Doyle

Welcome New Advisory Board Members

The Center is developing a network of experts from various disciplines and professional sectors to provide guidance and support. We are proud to announce our new Advisory Board members, each of whom brings a unique and rich set of experiences in the field of child rights:

  Neil Boothby, Ph.D., Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
   Brigette DeLay, Child Protection Officer, UNICEF
   Carol Smolenski, Executive Director, ECPAT USA, New York, NY
  Maria Woltjen, Director, Immigrant Children's Advocacy Project, Chicago, IL
CHRC Survey of Loyola Faculty

At the end of last year, the Center implemented a survey of Loyola's faculty to determine existing capacity and interest in issues affecting children and youth. In total, 111 faculty members responded to the survey, representing thirty-five departments in nine different schools across our three campuses.  Of those responding, over half reported that they were currently involved in research on topics revolving around children and youth.  Furthermore, these faculty members reported affiliations with over 160 professional and community-based organizations working on child/youth issues, both in the U.S. and abroad.  

We were excited to hear of the strong interest in the Center and the desire for it to be a resource for collaboration, research, teaching, and project development.  We believe that the mission of the Center can be furthered by bringing together departments and researchers along with creating ties to the communities in which we work.

NoahSobe Upcoming Center Events

February 15, 2010: post-communist transition and children's educational rights in central/east Europe, a presentation by noah sobe, 2009 chrc faculty fellow

By coincidence, the year 1989 saw both the fall of the Berlin Wall and the ratification by the UN General Assembly of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). This presentation will address how educational guarantees and opportunities have changed in Central/East Europe in the post-communist period, focusing on the educational rights and access of minority populations, language of instruction, and recent democratization initiatives connected with the expansion of the European Union.

7:00 - 8:00 pm, Lewis Towers Ballroom/Beane Hall, 820 N. Michigan Avenue, at Loyola's Water Tower Campus, Chicago, Illinois. Please RSVP to

February 25, 2010: "what will it take? replicating the harlem children's zone model in chicago" with new york times magazine contributor and author, paul tough


President Barack Obama has called for the creation of "Promise Neighborhoods" nationwide, based on the Harlem Children Zone (HCZ) model established by Geoffrey Canada. Learn more about the HCZ from Paul Tough, and also hear from an interdisciplinary group of Chicago experts about "what it would take" to replicate the program in Chicago.

3:30 - 5:00 pm, Loyola Law School, 25 E. Pearson, 10th Floor, Loyola's Water Tower Campus, Chicago, Illiinois. Please RSVP to

May 1, 2010:
child rights in India mini-symposium, "india's children: preserving their rights, protecting their future"

An informative symposia on various human rights issues addressing India's most vulnerable children. Topics addressed include "Empowering Street Children," "Protecting Children from Violence and Abuse," " Nutrition as Foundation for Education," "Juvenile Justice in India," and "Advancing Child Rights in India Through Youth Development and Education." Speakers include international representatives from CHILDLINE India, Butterflies of India, the Akshaya Patra Foundation, and distinguished Loyola University Chicago faculty from the Civitas ChildLaw Center and the School of Social Work. Moderator: Jerome McDonnell, of WBEZ's "Worldview".

8:30 am - 3:00 pm, Loyola University Medical Center, Stritch School of Medicine, Maywood, IL. Please RSVP to Nila Vora at

Please see the CHRC website for updated information regarding a free film showing of "Care Of Footpath" directed by Master Kishan,  the youngest film director in the world  entered into Guinness records. Free film screenings, including Q&A with Master Kishan and his father, will be scheduled in Chicago on April 30, and in Maywood on May 1.

All CHRC events are free and open to the public, unless noted otherwise.

LUClogo About the Center
Recognizing that children require special protections, the Center for the Human Rights of Children was founded at Loyola University Chicago in 2006. The Center pursues an agenda of interdisciplinary research, education, and service to address critical human rights issues affecting children and youth, both locally and globally.

The Center represents Loyola University's efforts to protect and advance the human rights of children, engaging students, faculty, and the community at large through research, scholarship, advocacy, and programs.

Contact Us
Katherine Kaufka Walts, J.D.| Director | | 312-915-6351
James Garbarino, Ph.D. | Senior Faculty Fellow | | 773-508-3001
David Doyle | Doctoral Candidate | Graduate Assistant | | 312-915-6357
Aggeliki Gikas | Administrative Assistant | | 312-915-6350

To learn more about the Center, please visit