Becoming a Member

Membership Criteria

There are two categories of membership of ENOC – full and associate.

Full membership of ENOC is open to independent children’s rights institutions within Council of Europe member states which meet all of the following criteria:

  • The institution is established through legislation approved by parliament, which provides for its independence.
  • The institution has the function of protecting and promoting children’s rights. This function is established through legislation.
  • There are no provisions in the legislation which limit the institution’s ability to set its own agenda in relation to this function, or which prevent it carrying out significant core functions suggested in the Paris Principles and ENOC’s Standards (see Annex A).
  • The institution must include or consist of an identifiable person or persons concerned exclusively with the protection and promotion of children’s rights.
  • Arrangements for appointment of ombudspersons, commissioners and members of a commission must be established by legislation, setting out the term of the mandate and arrangements for renewal, if any.

Moreover, in order for institutions to be members, they must hold authority, set down in legislation, to advocate for, protect and promote the rights and best interests of the child. Institutions may be constituted separately or may form part of an independent national or regional human rights institution. In all cases they must meet the above criteria. (See Article 4 of ENOC new Statues, 2021)

Where the criteria in article 4 are not met, the institution may be considered for associate membership if it demonstrates it is actively seeking to meet these criteria.

Applying for membership

Institutions wishing to apply for membership of ENOC should in the first instance contact the ENOC Chairperson through the ENOC Secretariat (secretariat@ombudsnet.org) for details of the application process.

You may find more information on the criteria, application and assessment process of applications for membership in the ENOC Handbook on application for membership of ENOC.

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