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Salem State University Establishes the Chair of the UNCRC Policy Center

Professor Yvonne M. Vissing Named Chair of UNCRC Policy Center

Director-General Mr. Joseph Varughese has selected Yvonne M. Vissing, PhD of Salem State University for holding the Chair of UNCRC Policy Center. The chair is designed for Universities and Research Centers’ work towards the protection and promotion of children’s rights. It is initiated by “Hope For Children” UNCRC Policy Center, a Humanitarian institution based in Nicosia, Cyprus whose mission is to advocate and to protect children’s rights based on the standards and principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and European Union Law.

Under Dr. Vissing’s leadership, Salem State University established its Center for Childhood and Youth Studies as one of the major centers of the university in 1999.  Since that time it has been instrumental in creating an interdisciplinary Certificate in Child Studies for undergraduate students, a concentration in Child Studies in the sociology department, a speaker series, a film series, a book series, and an annual Salem as a Safer Child Community Symposium.  It partners with a variety of governmental, nonprofit, educational and health organizations, as well as creating an international partnership with the University of Nottingham (England) Children and Childhood Network.  The Center for Childhood and Youth Studies is comprised of an interdisciplinary set of university scholars, students, and community partners.  Scholars are conducting a variety of research, service activities, and publications in areas including child rights, homelessness, impact of media on children, public sociology, psychology, criminal justice, physical, emotional, and dental health, communications, political science and education.  It has been responsible for helping the city of Salem, Massachusetts to become a Child and Youth Rights Respecting Community.  It also works with national and international child rights and well-being organizations.

Yvonne M. Vissing, PhD, is professor of sociology and founding director of the Center for Childhood and Youth Studies at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts.  She has worked in the area of child and youth advocacy for her entire career.  Author of more than six books and many chapters, professional journal articles and other publications, she has worked as a teacher, researcher, consultant, therapist, award-willing film maker, mediator, guardian-ad-litem, and helps organizations to decrease child abuse and improve child well-being.  She is a National Institute of Mental Health Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Whiting Foundation Fellow, was appointed by the governor to be on the New Hampshire Juvenile Parole Board, was a board member for the National Coalition for the Homeless, works with different child rights groups in the United States, teaches free classes for the National Alliance for Mental Illness, and works with both domestic and international groups.  Pursuit of human rights, community-building, resiliency, peace and justice drive her works.  She has three children, a variety of animal family members, and lives on a small gentleman’s farm in rural New Hampshire, USA.

The chair will act as an agent of knowledge on children’s rights within the academic community through policy and practice, by teaching, conducting research and providing services to the community, such as specialized courses and training for professionals.

The establishment of the chair of the UNCRC Policy Center seeks to nurture cooperation and collaborative action between organizations and agencies around the world. This is in the hope and expectation that working together will enable the more effective implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the enjoyment of children’s rights to the fullest extent.

Released: April 14, 2015
"Hope for Children" UNCRC Policy Center
75 Limassol Avenue
2121 Nicosia, Cyprus
Telephone: +357 22 10234
Fax: +357 22104201


Yvonne M. Vissing
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