In this article, we develop a model for child participation in child welfare services (CPC). Child participation has gained increasing attention in research, policy and practice in the last couple of decades. Two perspectives have concurrently moved this agenda forward—childhood sociology and children's rights—leading to an almost irrefutable understanding of children as social actors with independent rights. We integrate these perspectives in one model in our CPC model. We base the model on the rights-based Lundy model of child participation and develop it with theoretical insights from childhood sociology and social work as well as empirical insights from the literature on CPC. To capture the specific conditions of child welfare services and the social world of the child, we add contexts as a new overarching element in our CPC model. We also expand the four elements in the original Lundy model to include time and space, voices, direct and indirect audiences and influence and statutory power. The CPC model is designed to conceptualize how child participation unfolds as both a right of the child a social practice within the specific setting of child welfare services.
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Published inChild & Family Social Work