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Understanding, accessing and responding to poverty from a child standpoint

PHOTO: 69 University St
April 30, 2024
Room 0G.007, 69-71 University Street, Queen's University
13:00 - 14:30

Centre for Children’s Rights Seminar Series
School of SSESW, Queen's University Belfast

In Conversation with Dr Cadhla O’Sullivan 

Full title: Material, Opportunity and Relational for Children (MOR*): Understanding, accessing and responding to poverty from a child standpoint

*MOR is a child-centered framework to understand the multidimensional effects of child poverty

Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child states that children have a right to have their voices heard on all matters affecting them and to have those views given due weight. Currently, 1 in 6 children in Australia are living in income poverty, affecting their ability to thrive both now and into the future.  However, little research has been undertaken with children to understand their experiences of living in poverty. Both in research and practice, children are excluded from decision making that affects them and their families. MOR for Children aims to understand what it is like to grow up in poverty, what is needed to support children and their families, and what must change if we are to end child poverty in Australia.

This paper presents a methodology consisting of qualitative; rights-based research with children and young people between the ages of six and 16 in two regional communities in Australia to develop a child standpoint on poverty. This paper will present the MOR framework designed to be used by governments, service providers, and communities who are committed to ending child poverty in this wealthy country. It is a tool for acting to end child poverty, scaffolding wellbeing, and ensuring no child is left behind.

We are delighted to welcome back Dr Cadhla O’Sullivan, research fellow at the Children’s Policy Centre, Australian National University in Canberra. She was awarded her doctorate recently from Queen’s University Belfast where she conducted qualitative, participatory research with children and youth in Colombia for peace. Prior to this, Cadhla completed her Master's degree with our Centre for Children’s Rights, with a focus on conducting genuinely rights-based research with children and young people. 

Cadhla’s research interests involve conducting participatory, rights-based research with children all of ages but particularly within the middle childhood period (6-12 years). Her research revolves around issues of child justice. Her current research with the Children’s Policy Centre focuses on child poverty and wellbeing, looking at the structural barriers that perpetuate cycles of entrenched disadvantage. Her past research has involved addressing childhood disadvantage in the post-conflict environment of Colombia, using creative arts-based methods in educational settings for peace. 

Cadhla has undertaken research with children of all ages from 4-18 years across the geographical contexts of Ireland, the UK, Colombia and now Australia.

All welcome! To attend, RSVP to Evie Heard:

School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work
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Event Organiser Details
Name Evie Heard
PHOTO: 69 University St