COVID-19: The IBCR sets up exceptional provisions

The International Bureau for Children’s Rights takes the global spread of COVID-19 or Coronavirus very seriously. As a result, we have adapted our activities and taken preventive measures to safeguard the health of all. The situation being unprecedented, the Bureau has set up a dedicated unit that stays abreast of news and guidelines from each country in which we are active. These provisions may be subject to change.

Here are the actions taken by the IBCR to limit the spread of COVID-19 :

  • All business travel by members of our team is suspended until further notice.
  • Staff members on mission abroad have been repatriated and are undergoing isolation procedures recommended by the health authorities.
  • Public events are cancelled (“Voluntary Cooperation: A Lever for Change” originally scheduled for March 19) or postponed to future dates as yet unknown (the “Scotiabank Charity Challenge” originally scheduled for April 25 and 26).
  • The staff of the Montreal office continues to telework, for those whose position allows it. The Tegucigalpa office has been closed since Monday, March 16 for a period of 7 days, in accordance with the decrees issued by the country’s authorities. The offices in Kinshasa and Ouagadougou are currently operating normally, but we continue to monitor the situation daily in order to react quickly to possible developments in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burkina Faso.
  • Recruitment of the summer cohort of interns is ongoing, but interviews scheduled for the next few weeks have been postponed indefinitely for the time being. The starting date for the internship announced in the offers (4 May) is also no longer in effect for the moment. It will be redefined in light of developments in Quebec. The Bureau will keep candidates informed.

We continue to mobilize and act for the protection of children’s rights and the strengthening of national protection systems, and our projects continue in all our countries of intervention wherever possible. We must, however, ensure the health and safety of our teams around the world in this unprecedented situation, and therefore adapt our ways of doing things for the coming days.

In these complicated times, the IBCR wishes to recall the importance of solidarity, a founding principle of any non-profit organization, but also essential in our society. Mutual aid within our communities is more necessary than ever, especially for the most vulnerable people (especially people aged 65 and over, immunodeficient people and children).

To find out how you can take action to preserve children from COVID-19 and help them understand this unprecedented period, please refer to the UNICEF website.

We also advise you to follow recognized hygiene measures to prevent the transmission of viruses and bacteria.

For information on the measures taken by Quebec health authorities, we invite you to visit the provincial government website. To learn more about developments in Canada, visit the federal government site.