The Medical School has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with “Hope For Children” UNCRC Policy Center (HFC), an International Humanitarian and Independent Institution based in Nicosia, Cyprus that advocates and protects children’s rights based on the standards and principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and European Union Law.

Under this agreement, medical student volunteers will form the HFC Club and organise periodic visits to the HFC Children’s Shelter under the guidance of the clinical faculty.  Club volunteers will aim to support the well-being of children in several ways: from delivering preventive training sessions on issues such as wellness and personal hygiene, smoking, nutrition, and sexually transmitted diseases, among others; to performing diagnostic tests, under faculty supervision, and to establishing a ‘Big Brother-Big Sister’ programme.  Furthermore, Club members will be able to fulfil their student selected component and/or elective requirements at HFC.

HFC’s doors are open to all children regardless of religious, cultural or other background. HFC also aims to improve the quality of life of socially disadvantaged children, such as asylum seekers, refugees and children from war-torn areas. It provides consultancy, advocacy, lobbying and academic research in order to bring about change in the lives of many children and promote their rights and well-being in policy and practice. HFC is providing rehabilitation and support services to children in need such as victims of sexual abuse, bullying and any kind of abuse or neglect. Additionally, HFC operates, since July 2014, with the approval and collaboration of the Cyprus Social Welfare Services, the first private Children’s Shelter in Cyprus for unaccompanied children, “Home for Hope”. The Shelter provides holistic and interdisciplinary services to the children accommodated that would cover all aspects of their daily living and attend to their needs in the fullest extent possible.

Find more about the “Hope For Children” UNCRC Policy Center here.

From L-R: Andria Neocleous, HFC Director of Humanitarian Division, Joseph Varughese, HFC Director-General,  Prof Andreas Charalambous, Executive Dean Medical School, George Sycallides, Head of Communications Office, Medical School