According to the Federal Statistical Office, there were some 137,000 reported cases of child endangerment through violence, abuse or neglect in 2016 in Germany alone. Effective child protection should be in place to help these children. How well are children protected in different Western European countries? What lessons can be learned? What can we build on? The European research project HESTIA (Policies and responses with regard to child abuse and neglect in England, Germany and the Netherlands: a comparative multi-site study) has been set up to answer these questions.
Within HESTIA, researchers from Germany, England and the Netherlands analyse their national child protection policies and laws and compare them with one another. They focus not only on the theory but above all look at the practice: How does the state define families in need of support? When does it intervene to protect children in families? What measures does it use and what effect do these have on children and their families? The study also takes the parents’ views into account and discusses, for example, the extent to which they are listened to and involved in measures taken for their children’s well-being. The goal of HESTIA is that the findings should be used to stimulate professional debate and formulate recommendations for policy-makers and those involved in child protection, such as youth welfare offices and umbrella organisations covering the bodies responsible for public child and youth services. HESTIA is coordinated in the Netherlands; on the Bavarian side, the German Youth Institute (Deutsches Jugendinstitut) is involved.
HESTIA is funded by the “NORFACE Welfare State Futures” research programme. ERA-NET NORFACE (New Opportunities for Research Funding Agency Cooperation in Europe) is a network made up of funding organisations from 18 European countries. The aim is to strengthen social science research at national and European level through transnational research cooperation. Besides Welfare State Futures, NORFACE also funds international networks concerned with research into migration and religion.
- Advising on the choice of funding instrument
- Support relating to budgeting and management structure
Comment on BayFOR’s contribution
“BayFOR has already provided the German Youth Institute with committed and competent support in several FP7 projects. We therefore turned to BayFOR once again when applying for HESTIA. Their in-depth knowledge of the ERA-NET funding instrument was a key advantage for us. They assisted us in all questions of budgeting and management structure. Especially when it came to the “Impact” section, we greatly benefited from their professional and personal support.”
Dr. Eric van Santen
Department Youth and Youth Services
German Youth Institute
HESTIA Project partner
Phone: +49 (0) 89 62306175