Quim

Quim Genís

GC Europe (EMA cohort 2016/ 2017)

I’m a Lawyer specialized in human rights and civil mediation. Within the field of human rights, my experience and research have been focussed on migration and children’s rights. After being graduated from EMA I worked at Terre des Hommes International Federation where I was focused on campaigning for children on the move. Following my experience in Brussels, I then worked under the Migration Program for the Catalan Red Cross, giving legal advice to migrants and refugees. Nowadays, I am a legal adviser at the Child Protection Authority in Catalonia. However, I can’t be away from the NGO sector, and I contribute as much as I can in some projects at the local level. Hasta la victoria siempre!!

What motivates you to work on children’s rights?

I do believe I’m working for making life better for children. When I started working in the field of children’s rights, I was attracted by the idea that any advance made concerning the rights of the child would mean a global achievement for today’s society and the future one (today I still have hope, but I’m a bit less idealistic).

Children’s and adolescents’ empowerment was, and still is, my main motivation when working on children’s rights. I like the idea that by empowering them, I can contribute to making a difference in their lives. Making children more visible and giving them a voice in any space of their life is not only the key to empower children, but also the most important tool to protect their rights.

What gives you hope regarding the current developments and the future of children’s rights?

It seems to me that the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, has been the perfect time to rethink the rights of the child and how to implement them. Even though the UNCRC has played a major role to improve a child’s life, there are many gaps to cover and new challenges to be faced. Hence, this anniversary was the perfect time for all actors working for the rights of the child to take a step further and search on how to implement the Convention more efficiently. Child participation appears to be one of the cornerstones of the UNCRC but at the same time, it has been one of the pillars less respected. I have the impression that child participation will play a significant role in the new understanding of the rights of the child, and Greta Thunberg is a great example of it.

Which skill/knowledge that you acquired during the master are you currently using in your work?

My master’s thesis was based on the right of the child to be heard in any legal proceeding concerning them. Today, as I’m working as a legal adviser for the child protection authority in Catalonia, I can put in practice what I learned during the masters. Hence, in my day-to-day job, I give primary importance to children’s opinions and their views. Moreover, I also work through a human rights-based approach when it comes to implementing any proceeding concerning children under public protection, and I can clearly say that this is thanks to EMA.