Community Resilience and the Fulfilment of Child Rights in the Family, School and Community
The present paper presents the experience of researching the resilience of the local community and the fulfilment of the rights of the child. The aim of research was to place the assessment of the rights of the child in the function of local community resilience, focusing on one particular group of rights: the right to participate. This concept is defined through
the view of the local community from the perspective of children, parents and teachers, within the context of the realisation of child rights at the local level, which has a direct influence on the development and upbringing of children. The local community selected for study was the town of Velika Gorica in the Republic of Croatia, and the research included qualitative data collected through interviews in seven focus groups. The study included 13 children, 9 parents and 10 teachers. The results show that the key element of children’s understanding of the concept of child rights is respect and appreciation from adults despite differences in the amount and type of power possessed by children. The understanding of the concept of child rights from the perspective of adults is based on the need for these rights due to children’s dependence, immaturity and need for protection. Discussion about resilience opens up a new dimension for nonprofessional interpretation. The concept of resilience produced ambiguous reactions among children, parents and teachers, being perceived in two ways: as “positive” and “negative”. In all three focus groups, participants agree that there is a connection between child rights and resilience. They explain the connection as clear, logical and conditioned by interaction.
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