More about ISS Australia & DCI
International Social Service (ISS) Australia is the proud host and creator of this website. It is the Australian section of the international NGO called Defence for Children International (DCI).
ISS Australia an independent, not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation with over 55 years’ experience defending children’s rights and connecting families across the world.
Our mission is to advance the best interests and rights of children from families separated by international borders, which we pursue by providing professional social work, legal and advocacy services. Find out more about ISS Australia
Defence for Children International
Defence for Children International (DCI) is an independent, not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation that has been promoting and protecting children’s rights on a global, regional, national and local level for more than 35 years. It was founded in 1979, the International Year of the Child, by British child rights specialist Nigel Cantwell, and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
Nigel Cantwell, founder of DCI in 1979
'Care for Kids' Australian TV ad created by Allan Johnson & Alan Moris for the International Year of the Child in 1979
Internationally, DCI's main areas of work are: justice for children, violence against children, children on the move, and children affected by armed conflict, but each national section works on child rights priorities in their respective country.
An Australian section of DCI was formed by volunteers in the 1980s. In 2014, DCI Australia merged with ISS Australia. ISS Australia has since taken on DCI's child rights work in Australia and been the Australian section of DCI. We are called Child Rights Australia.
In Australia, our current campaign priorities include:
- raising the minimum age of criminal responsibility across all Australian jurisdictions to the CRC standard of 12 years or above
- regulating international commercial surrogacy in accordance with the rights of the child
- advocating for Australian ratification of the CRC-OP3 to allow individual communications concerning Australian breaches of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
- banning smacking and all forms of violence against children in all Australian settings