The website is a vital source of information for people working on issues related to children who lack adequate family care. The website library contains over 1400 research, policy and programme resources related to the care and protection of vulnerable children. The library is searchable by region, country or specific topics.
NEW IN THE BCN LIBRARY:
The Child’s Right to Quality Care
In this paper, Save the Children International reviews the implementation of the UN Guidelines on the Alternative Care of Children in the Western Balkan Countries of Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Kenya Careleavers Conference Report: “How I Left Care”
Koinonia Old Beneficiaries Welfare Association and Kenya Society of Careleavers report on their annual Careleavers Conference that took place on December 7th, 2013.
Child Welfare Policies, Services And Their Aptitude For Care And Protection Of Vulnerable Children And Their Families
Report on the child care practices, policies, and programs currently in effect in Nepal.
Children and Youth Services Review Special Issue: Young People's Transitions from Care to Adulthood
In December 2011, the Children and Youth Services Review released a special volume (32) focused on "Young People's Transitions from Care to Adulthood."
Young People's Transitions from Care to Adulthood in European and Postcommunist Eastern European and Central Asian Societies
This study compares the data on young people leaving care from 9 non-communist European countries examined in the INTRAC document with 14 post-communist countries reviewed in the SOS and INTRAC publications.
Young People Leaving Care: Participatory Research to Improve Child Welfare Practices and the Rights of Children and Young People
This paper discusses participatory research with young people who are leaving public care in Finland to begin independent lives.
Life after Growing Up in Care: Informing Policy and Practice through Research
In this review, the authors highlight evidence drawn from research on life after growing up in care in Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Ireland, and the United States.
Understanding Care Leavers in Russia: Young People's Experiences of Institutionalisation
This paper presents the findings of a survey of Russian care leavers.
Literature Review: Best Practices in Transitioning Youth Out of Care –Successful Transitions, Success as Adults
This literature review examines literature on the best practices for youth aging out of care that indicate successful outcomes for them as adults.
The Best Interests of the Child in Intercountry Adoption
This study, conducted by Nigel Cantwell and UNICEF, seeks to answer the question: “what is it that enables a policy, process, decision or practice to be qualified as either respectful or in violation of the best interests of the child in intercountry adoption?”
Hague Note on the Financial Aspects of Intercountry Adoption
To address the issues related to the financial aspects of intercountry adoptions, the Hague Convention initiated an Experts’ Group which produced nine Conclusions and Recommendations published by the Permanent Bureau as a “Note”.
Children on the Run: Unaccompanied Children Leaving Central America And Mexico and the Need for International Protection
This report, issued by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, examines the situation and needs of unaccompanied children who emigrate from Central America and Mexico to the United States, and offers recommendations based on those needs.
Why Care Matters: The importance of adequate care for children and society
This report by Family For Every Child highlights the needs of children without adequate family care, the impact inadequate care on children and society, and why family care is important.
Stability and Change in Institutional Alternative Care for Children in Israel and Japan
This PhD thesis paper, by Michael Maher King of the University of Oxford, reviews the situations of children in institutional alternative care in Israel and Japan.
This report by Human Rights Watch examines Japan’s alternative care system for children, describing its organization and processes, current data on the use of different forms of alternative care, the problems found in the institutionalization of most children (including infants), as well as abuses that take place in the system.
World Family Map 2014: Mapping Family Change and Child Well-being Outcomes
The second annual edition of the World Family Map investigates how family characteristics affect children’s healthy development around the globe and includes a new essay focusing on union stability and early childhood health in developing countries.
Does Family Matter? The Well-Being of Children Growing Up in Institutions, Foster Care and Adoption
In this chapter of the Handbook of Child Well-Being, the authors review the findings from research on the cognitive and social-emotional development of children growing up in institutions, foster care and adoption.
Children, Orphanages, and Families: a Summary of Research to Help Guide Faith-based Action
This Summary of Research by the Faith to Action Initiative provides a concise overview of a range of studies and findings that can inform approaches to caring for children who, through orphanhood, abandonment, or other causes, have been separated from parental care.
Global Research, Practice, and Policy Issues on the Care of Infants and Young Children at Risk: The Articles in Context
This introductory article of a Special Issue of Infant Mental Health Journal on Global Research, Practice, and Policy Issues in the Care of Infants and Young Children at Risk provides a useful overview, placing the articles in the broader contexts of research on institutionalized children and different initiatives to prevent inappropriate care.
From Institutional Care to Family Support: Development of an Effective Early Intervention Network in the Nizhny Novgorod Region, Russian Federation
This article documents an initiative to establish a replicable professional model that would direct the child welfare system in the Nizhny Novgorod Region away from institutional care and toward services for young children and their families that reduce the risk of institutionalization.
Residential Care for Abandoned Children and their Integration into a Family-Based Setting in Uganda: Lessons for Policy and Programming
This article describes a model of care for abandoned and neglected infants in need of urgent physical, social, and medical support as implemented by the Child's i Foundation, an international, nongovernmental organization operating in Uganda.
From Maid to Mother: Transforming Facilities, Staff Training, and Caregiver Dignity in an Institutional Facility for Young Children in Nepal
This article provides a case study of a project to improve the health, safety, and development of children birth to 6 years old in a large orphanage in Nepal.
Adoption Policy and Evidence-Based Domestic Adoption Practice: A Comparison of Romania, Ukraine, India, Guatemala, and Ethiopia
This article uses data collected from adoptive parents’ postadoption and governmental data in Romania, Ukraine, India, Guatemala, and Ethiopia to focus on domestic adoption in each of these countries.
How the Republic of Georgia has Nearly Eliminated the Use of Institutional Care for Children
This article documents how between 2005 and 2013, the Government in the Republic of Georgia closed 32 large, state-run institutions housing children without adequate family care.
Save the Children Policy Brief: Child Care Institutions – A Last Resort
Save the Children has released a policy brief outlining its position on the use of institutional care for children.
Addicted to Orphans: Donor influence in Uganda's child protection system
Cheney presented a paper at the Young Lives and Globalization in Africa workshop at the University of Liège, Belgium on 21st February 2014 on the "Orphan Industrial Complex."
Drumming Together for Change: A Child’s Right to Quality Care in Sub-Saharan Africa
This report is based on a synthesis of eight assessments of the implementation of the Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children (“the Guidelines”) in Benin, Gambia, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Togo, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Researching the Linkages Between Social Protection and Children’s Care in Rwanda: The VUP and Its Effects on Child Wellbeing, Care, and Family Reunifi
This report features the results of, and recommendations based on, a study conducted in Rwanda which investigates the links between a cash transfer program, child well-being, and children’s care and family reunification.
Children's Reintegration: Longitudinal study of children’s reintegration in Moldova
This important report by Partnership for Every Child Moldova and Family For Every Child documents a 22-month longitudinal study of the reintegration of children in residential care in Moldova.
This article closes a special edition of the journal Psychosocial Intervention focused on the state of child protection in 16 countries with special attention to out-of-home care placements, principally family foster care and residential care.
Kinship Care for the Safety, Permanency, and Well-being of Children Removed from the Home for Maltreatment: A Systematic Review
This article presents a systematic review of controlled experimental and quasi-experimental studies in which children removed from the home for maltreatment and subsequently placed in kinship care were compared with children placed in non-kinship foster care for child welfare outcomes.
Save the Children: Position Statement on Families
This position statement by Save the Children highlights the central place of families in numerous international legal instruments and how the concept is understood under international law and by the organisation.
Perceived food and labor equity and school attendance among Ugandan children living in kin care
This study examines the association between relatedness and perceived food and work equity, and school attendance for children living in kinship care in Uganda.
Australia: Whose responsibility is it? Supporting the needs of informal kinship care
This presentation by Professor Connolly of Melbourne University reviews recent trends in the use of kinship care in Australia and discusses what this shift means in the context of the model of child protection used in that country.
Understanding and Improving Informal Alternative Care Mechanisms: Kinship care in West Central Africa
A report by Save the Children examining the role and extent of kinship care in West Central Africa, as well as looking into program and policy implications and gaps in advocacy.
Kinship Care and Poverty: Using Census Data to Examine the Extent and Nature of Kinship Care in the UK
The paper presents findings from the first-ever study of kinship care in the UK using census micro data, with important implications for policy, particularly with regard to the needs of kinship carers for financial, emotional, practical and other support.
The 'dance' of kinship care in England and Ireland: Navigating a course between regulation and relationships
This paper charts some of the reasons for the 'organic growth' of formal kinship care in the UK and Ireland in the last 20 years and the multiple dynamics that have shaped this.
Myanmar: Kinship Care Handbook
This Handbook aims to provide guidance for Save the Children staff, NGO partners, Community Child Protection Groups and community volunteers in Myanmar in protecting the welfare of children living with extended family members.
Nepal: Kinship Care at Community is Better Model to Ensure Psychosocial and Economic Security of Orphans Living with HIV than from Care Homes
The objective of this study was to investigate which model of care and support is more appropriate for improving psychosocial and economic security of AIDS orphans in Nepal.
USA: Stepping Up for Kids -what government and communities should do to support kinship families
This policy report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation summarizes what is known about kinship care in the United States, identifies the problems and issues these families face, and make recommendations about how best to support caregivers
Out of home care in France and Switzerland
This article focuses on the structural similarities and dissimilarities that exist between child protection systems in France and Switzerland, as exemplified by the evolutions of the last decade.
Out of home care in Norway and Sweden - similar and different
This article provides an overview of the current situation in the out-of-home care in Norway and Sweden.
Education for Orphans in Africa: Predictors Impacting School Attendance
This powerful chart illustrates data from Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) in 5 African countries to better understand how orphan status affect the school attendance of children in Africa and the extent to which living in kinship care can act as a protective factor in this context.
The Right of Boys and Girls to a Family. Alternative Care. Ending Institutionalization in the Americas
This report (in Spanish) by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) analyzes children’s right to live and be raised by their families, and establishes the resulting obligations for States when it comes to supporting and strengthening families’ ability to raise and care for their children.
Indicators of Family Care for Development for Use in Multicountry Surveys
This important article explains the process through which global indicators of family care for (child) development were drafted and tested in several countries.
Improving positive parenting skills and reducing harsh and abusive parenting in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic review.
This article investigates effectiveness of parenting interventions on reducing harsh and harmful parenting practices in low-to-middle income countries.
Spanking and Child Development across the first decade of life
This study examines the prevalence of maternal and paternal spanking of children at 3 and 5 years of age and the associations between spanking and children's externalizing behavior and receptive vocabulary through age 9.
A study of children in institutions offers a perspective on the cognitive benefits of parenting
This article reviews a new book by Charles A. Nelson, Nathan A. Fox and Charles H. Zeanah who conducted seminal studies in Romania on children who were institutionalised, comparing their developmental and well-being outcomes to children who were placed in foster care or adoptive families.
Alternative Care in Laos: An Exploratory Study With Children and Caregivers
This report summarizes the findings of a study on parental and alternative childcare in Luang Prabang and Xayabury provinces in Northern Lao People’s Democratic Republic.
Care related Concluding Observations adopted by the Committee on China, Kuwait, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, Moldova, Paraguay, Sao Tome & Principe and Tuvalu
The UN Commission for Social Development Resolution on the 20th Anniversary of the International Year of the Family
The UN Commission for Social Development (CSocD) held discussions in New York in observance of the 20th Anniversary of the International Year of the Family and drafted a resolution to be adopted by the UN Economic and Social Council.
Ending Legalised Violence Against Children (Global Report 2013)
This comprehensive report by the Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children analyses data regarding progress toward eliminating corporal punishment amongst all states party to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
Report of the 2nd Pan-African Conference on Parenting 2013
This report summarises the presentations and conclusions from the 2nd Pan-African annual conference on parenting held on the 16-17th October 2013 in Malawi on the theme of "Understanding realities of teenage parenting: a special focus on adolescents (boys and girls) with parenting responsibilities."
Program P: A Manual for Engaging Men in Fatherhood, Caregiving, and Maternal and Child Health
The Program P Manual is a resource developed as part of the global MenCare campaign that identifies best practices on engaging men in maternal and child health, caregiving, and preventing violence against women and children, through the lens of gender equality.
Toward a World Free from Violence: Global survey on violence against children
The Global Survey on Violence against Children, conducted under the auspices of the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Violence against Children, examines the measures in place around the world to ensure follow-up to the recommendations set out in the 2006 UN Study on Violence against Children.
Men who Care: A multi-country qualitative study of men in non- traditional caregiving roles
A report examining the experiences and attitudes of men involved in non-traditional care activities and roles in Brazil, Chile, India, Mexico, and South Africa.
War Child Holland: Syria Child's Rights Situation Analysis January 2014
Through participatory information gathering tools, War Child Holland implemented a Child Right Situation Analysis to discuss and analyze the issues identified by Syrian children as the most important to them.
This fascinating new book provides a comprehensive and clear picture of the situation of children who are orphaned or abandoned in China. It introduces the context and framework for the alternative care system and China’s welfare system as it applies to children, and describes both the formal child welfare system and the informal care system, particularly kinship care.
Left Behind: The Exclusion of Children and Adults with Disabilities from Reform and Rights Protection in the Republic of Georgia
This hard-hitting report by Disability Rights International finds that although the Government of Georgia has undertaken an ambitious child care reform process over the last decade, institutionalized children with disabilities were largely excluded from this reform process.
Assessment of Community-and Family-Based Alternative Child-Care Services in Ethiopia
This assessment conducted by FHI 360, with support from Ethiopia's Ministry of Women, Youth and Children Affairs (MoWYCA) and the OAK Foundation examines formal community and family- based alternative child care services and service providing agencies in Ethiopia, with a particular focus on magnitude, quality and quality-assurance mechanisms.
Development Perspectives of Foster Care in Armenia: Research Results Analysis
This report produced by the Center for Educational Research and Save the Children summarises a broader research study which examined the foster care system in Armenia and in particular lessons learnt from a pilot programme introduced in Armenia in 2005.
Foster Family: A Study on the Practice of Foster Care for Children In India
This important study on foster care practices in India provides important insight into the history, approaches, challenges and opportunities facing the development of foster care services in the country, presenting a picture of foster care practices across nine Indian states.
Foster Care Services for Children in Moldova
This comprehensive assessment of foster care services in the Republic of Moldova explores the differences between the two main types of foster care services provided in that country, including in terms requirements and profiles of caregivers and of the children, the legal and policy framework underpinning them, including the legal status of the foster parent, as well as the allowances and benefits for each type of care.
An International Literature Review of the Impact of Fostering on Foster Carers’ Children
This literature review by the Rees Centre for Research in Fostering and Education at the University of Oxford was undertaken to identify the ways in which carers’ children might be more effectively prepared and supported when their families are fostering.
After Yolanda: What Children Think, Need and Recommend
On 14th December, Save the Children, Plan, World Vision, working with UNICEF, organized consultations with 124 children and young people in Capiz, Cebu, Iloilo, Leyte and East and West Samar to listen to their views about the humanitarian situation six weeks after the Typhoon, find out what their priorities are and ask for suggestions to improve the response.
Strategic Response Plan for the Emergency Response: Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), the Philippines
This Strategic Response Plan was developed and designed to support the Government of the Philippines’ response to the immediate humanitarian needs of the people affected by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), and to complement the Government’s National Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan.
Evaluation of the Implementation of the national strategy and action plan for the reform of the residential childcare system in Moldova 2007-2012
This evaluation reviews the implementation of the National Strategy and Action Plan for the Reform of the Residential Childcare System 2007–2012 approved by the Government of the Republic of Moldova in July 2007.
United Nations General Assembly 2013 Resolution on the 20th Anniversary of the International Year of the Family
The United Nations General Assembly adopted on the 18th December 2013 a resolution on Preparations for and observance of the twentieth anniversary of the International Year of the Family.
United Nations General Assembly Resolutions on Children's Rights 2013
The United Nations General Assembly adopted without a vote four resolutions on children’s rights on the 18th December 2013, focused on the Rights of the Child, the Girl Child, Child, Early and Forced Marriage and Strengthening Collaboration on Child Protection within the United Nations system.
On the 17th October, Dr. Stela Grigorash, a senior Moldovan child protection expert and the Director of Partnerships for EveryChild Moldova gave a presentation at the USAID/DCOF office in Washington DC, USA, on the important work and lessons learnt in reforming the care system in that country.
The second of two important presentations by Dr. Stela Grigorash, the Director of Partnerships for EveryChild Moldova, on the important work and lessons learnt in reforming the care system in that country.
This report documents the work conducted by Save the Children in collaboration with the Indonesian Ministry of Social Affairs over a period of 7 years to strengthen the national child protection system and change the underlying paradigm for that system away from over-reliance on residential care and towards child and family centered responses.
This research looked at the factors affecting the family reintegration of girls in the Tshangu district of Kinshasa (DRC), an operational zone of the local NGO OSEPER, a partner of War Child for a 3-year project, seeking to address the needs of street-connected girls, including family reintegration.
Reaching for Home: Global learning on family reintegration in low and lower-middle income countries
This inter-agency, desk-based research aims to arrive at a clearer understanding of reintegration practices for separated children in low and lower-middle income countries, pulling together learning from practitioners and academics working with a range of separated children.
Thirteen agencies working in Africa have issued a Joint Statement calling on African governments to strengthen their child protection systems to secure the right of children to a life free from violence, abuse, exploitation and neglect in both emergency and non-emergency settings.
The New Delhi Declaration renewing governments' commitments to the rights of children and pledging to support each other in the achievement of those rights, was adopted unanimously on 25th October 2013 by 32 Asian and Pacific States attending the Second High Level Meeting on South-South Cooperation for Child Rights in Asia and the Pacific.
This Recommendation by the European Commission on Investing in Children, stresses the importance of early intervention and preventative approaches, and makes quality childcare one of its key policy areas to break the cycle of disadvantage in early years and reduce the risk of child poverty and social exclusion.
On the 22nd October 2013, a new regional campaign in the Latin American and Caribbean region was launched to end the placement of children under three years of age in institutions.
This report seeks to increase understanding of the need for, and the process of, conducting outcome evaluations of parenting programmes in low- and middle-income countries. The guidance is aimed at policy-makers; programme planners and developers; high-level practitioners in government ministries; representatives of nongovernmental and community-based organizations; and donors working in the area of violence prevention.
This report just issued by the Child Protection Working Group presents the main findings of an interagency child protection assessment for Syria, covering the period February- May 2013, including on key thematic areas such as psychosocial wellbeing, physical violence, separation from caregivers and access to basic services and information.
Using social justice as the conceptual foundation, the authors present the structural barriers to socially just intercountry adoptions (ICAs) that can exploit and oppress vulnerable children and families participating in ICAs. They argue that such practices threaten the integrity of social work practice in that arena and the survival of ICA as a placement option.
The report of a major conference held in New Delhi in November 2012 entitled “A Better Way to Protect ALL Children: The Theory and Practice of Child Protection Systems”, encapsulates the substantive content of the presentations and related discussion; provides an analysis and documents the journey; and suggest an agenda, or at least direction, for future work on Child Protection systems.
This paper explores the role of education in social policy and its interplay with economic policy; underlines the links needed between deinstitutionalization, inclusive education and alternative services; and examines how child protection can be understood in the context of inter-Ministerial responsibilities and coordination.
The SRSG's annual report highlights the results of an expert consultation on violence in early childhood, which pointed the urgency of supporting families and caregivers in their child-rearing responsibilities and securing a responsive national child protection system to strengthen families’ capacity to raise young children in safe environments and prevent child abandonment and placement in residential care, with special attention to young children at risk.
In this paper, the author argues that the response to the orphan crisis in sub-Saharan Africa has focused mainly on mobilizing and distributing material resources to households with orphans. He provides an analysis of the trends in foster-care research in Africa and suggests that current ethnographic data on foster-care practices do not adequately reflect the changing context of fostering in that continent.
This document reports on Phase One of the Australian Child Wellbeing Project, a child-centred study in which young people’s perspectives are being used to design a major nationally representative survey of wellbeing among 8-14 year olds, and to interpret findings from that survey, including with young people living in out of home care and young people living with disability.
This paper by the Brookings Center on Children and Families examine the scope of parenting interventions in the US that directly address poor parenting, as research has found how much parenting matters.
India submitted its third and fourth combined report on the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. This extract of the report focuses on sections relevant to children's care and in particular those addressing Family Environment and Alternative Care.
The People’s Republic of China issued its third and fourth combined report on the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in June 2012. This extract of the report focuses on sections relevant to children's care and in particular those addressing Family Environment and Alternative Care.
Hope and Homes for Children, in partnership with the Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion (MIGEPROF), has conducted a national survey of all institutions for children in Rwanda to obtain an accurate picture of the current institutional system and the children living within it.
The state cabinet of Goa in India has approved a foster care scheme to assist children deprived of parental care or of the care of guardians, and in need of protection. These government guidelines set out the purpose of the scheme, criteria for eligibility and procedures to be followed, including the relevant forms.
The South Asia Alliance of Grassroots NGOs (SAAGN) launched the campaign “My Caring Family is My First Right” in June 2013. As part of the campaign, Butterflies, a registered voluntary organization working with street and working children in Delhi, is supporting a new online petition that calls on governments in the region to respect a child’s right to a family.
This report describes the methodology, findings and recommendations of the baseline survey for the project titled, “Building and Strengthening Community-Based Child Protection Systems in Busoga and Acholi sub-regions” commissioned by ANPPCAN.
This paper describes a study that assessed the attitudes of people in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan toward the implementation of foster care as an alternative to institutions for children.
The care related Concluding Observations adopted by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child with a particular focus on sections addressing Family Environment and Alternative Care.
This study, published by the UNICEF Office of Research and Brooks World Poverty Institute, examines the direct, indirect, and implementation impacts of social transfers on child protection outcomes in low- and middle-income countries.
Oxford Policy Management has conducted two rounds of qualitative evaluations of three poverty-reduction and human development programmes run by the BOTA Foundation in Kazakhstan and reviewed some of the impact of these programmes on family strengthening.
This qualitative study explores how household size influences the extent to which the basic needs of orphans and vulnerable children who received the cash transfers were met through the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) program in Ghana.
The 2013 KIDS COUNT Data Book provides a detailed picture of how children are faring in the United States. In addition to ranking states on overall child well-being, the Data Book ranks states in four domains: Economic Well-Being, Education, Health, and Family and Community.
Gatekeeping has been widely promoted as a key strategy to combat the unnecessary institutionalisation of children. This paper by Andy Bilson and Cath Larkins provides details of research into the gatekeeping system in Bulgaria for children under three and examples from recent Bulgarian and international practice, assessing the strength of the gatekeeping system in that country.
This article describes how the child welfare system for children without parental care is organized in Poland focusing on institutional care, foster care and adoption. It also discusses indirect and direct reasons contributing to the necessity of placing children in out-of-home care and challenges in the implementation of the current reforms of the system.
This paper presents findings from a study commissioned by the Inter Agency Task Team on Children affected by HIV and AIDS. The study identifies practical ways in which child protection and HIV sectors can combine their comparative expertise, to strengthen child protection systems that meet the needs of all children at risk of abuse, violence, exploitation and neglect, whilst also meeting the unique needs of HIV-affected and infected children, and those at increased risk of HIV infection and protection abuses.
General Comment 14 issued by the Committee on the Rights of the Child, refers to article 3(1), of the Convention on the Rights of the Child that asserts the right of the child to have his or her best interests taken as a primary consideration in all actions or decisions that concern him or her (in both the public and private spheres). The Committee provides also important guidance on the application of this right in the context of care decisions, including placement in alternative care.
This paper presents a comprehensive literature review of evidence-based parenting programs from around the world. The report reviews published literature from 2000 to 2012 and summarizes empirically based recommendations for supporting and strengthening child-caregiver relationships in the context of AIDS and poverty.
The USA-based National Child Traumatic Stress Network has recently released a second edition of the Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit, which is part of the Child Welfare Trauma Training course. The course assists those in the field of child welfare who wish to learn more about child welfare and trauma.
The goal of the Road to Melbourne meeting series is to build evidence and understanding amongst policy makers and programmers from different disciplines on approaches to the early identification of children born into HIV-affected families to ensure the linked provision of integrated services and support to children at risk and their families to promote optimal development.
This report by the national regulatory agency in the UK analyzes how a small sample of 12 children’s homes in England achieved and sustained outstanding status over a period of three years. It draws on the views of managers, staff and young people about what makes these homes outstanding and the key features which have contributed to their success.
In its 2013 State of the World’s Children Report, UNICEF has chosen to highlight the particular issues, needs, and circumstances of children with disabilities worldwide. The report includes a description of the common issues that children with disabilities face, models for inclusive policy and practice, and an agenda for action moving forward.
Retrak, a UK-based organization working with street children in Africa, has published an excellent practical manual detailing its standard operating procedures (SOPs) for family reintegration for children working or living on the street. This document includes guiding principles of family reintegration, key steps, tools, monitoring and evaluation, as well as variations on the key steps of family reintegration.
Retrak is an organization that works with street children in Africa. This report offers an evaluation of the impact of Retrak's programs in Ethiopia and Uganda in its pilot period (2011 and 2012) and the progress of the children involved in the programs using the Child Status Index (CSI), as a measurement of child wellbeing and a tool for tracking children’s progress as they transition from the street to family homes.
This systematic review, co-registered within both the Cochrane and Campbell Collaborations, summarizes the evidence from empirical studies comparing the effectiveness of interventions that have been established to promote inclusion and reintegration, and to reduce harm, in street-connected children and young people (who work and/or live on the streets) worldwide. The review includes 11 studies, evaluating 12 interventions from high income countries. No studies from middle and low income countries are included due to inadequate quality of available studies.
This report, published by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) in the UK, highlights the need to improve outcomes for children leaving care and returning to parents or families. The NSPCC provides recommendations for policymakers and practitioners to improve the quality of assessment, planning, and preparation regarding when and if a child should be returned home from care and to increase the support for children and their families once they return to their families.
The Millennium Development Goals will come to an end in 2015 and discussions are currently taking place on what framework will replace them. Children’s participation is crucial to these discussions. Between July 2012 and March 2013, members of Family for Every Child consulted with children living in seven different countries. This report summarizes the main findings that emerged from these consultations.
This Program Review documents the evolution of EveryChild Moldova since 1994, presenting the development of interventions to improve the lives of children through deinstitutionalization and identifying best practices that are relevant, useful, and replicable to other initiatives and organizations around the world.
This study commissioned by the Ministry of Gender, Children, and Community Development and financially and technically supported by UNICEF and the Better Care Network, aimed at describing the situation of children in institutional care and creating a database containing all institutions in Malawi catering for children requiring alternative care.
This paper presents new estimates of the average lifetime cost per child maltreatment (CM) victim in the United States and aggregate lifetime costs for all new cases of CM incurred in 2008 using an incidence-based approach. This study extends previous research in this area by correcting methodological flaws of previous studies; incorporating more recent and comprehensive studies of the epidemiology, consequences, and costs of CM; and providing a framework for using the findings in the literature to estimate the incidence-based economic burden of CM.
This article describes the results of a meta-analytic review aimed at providing an estimate of the prevalence of physical and emotional neglect by integrating prevalence figures from the body of research reporting on neglect. The authors conclude that neglect seems to be a neglected type of maltreatment in scientific research.
This study conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of scientific literature to summarize the evidence for associations between individual types of non-sexual child maltreatment and outcomes related to mental and physical health. This review is the first of its kind to demonstrate in aggregate quantitative effects the knowledge behind the associations, using 124 studies mostly from Western Europe, North America, Australia, and New Zealand.
This Child Welfare Information Gateway bulletin for professionals discusses what constitutes chronic neglect, and reviews ways to work with families experiencing chronic neglect, including critical elements of successful casework practice, examples of what agencies are doing, and ways agencies can integrate child welfare approaches to chronic neglect with prevention and early intervention efforts.
Using data from three rounds of the Young Lives longitudinal survey conducted in 2002, 2006, and 2009 in Ethiopia, this paper investigates whether the death of a parent during middle childhood has different effects on a child’s schooling and psychosocial outcomes when compared with death during adolescence.
This publication by SOS Children’s Villages International brings together research findings, learning and policy recommendations about sibling relations in alternative care gathered from five different SOS Children’s Villages associations (Germany, Austria, France, Italy, and Spain).
This study from the Childhood Wellbeing Research Centre, an independent research center with funding from the United Kingdom Department for Education, identifies which family stress factors and parental behaviors are associated with positive and negative outcomes for children at the age of 7 and whether stressful life events experienced in childhood are associated with negative outcomes in adolescence.
This edition of Insights produced by UNICEF summarizes the findings and recommendations of studies on the impact and outreach of social protection systems in Albania, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine where high rates of child placement in formal care still persist. The research offers important insight into the weaknesses and challenges faced by social protection systems in the region, but also point to ways in which policy-makers might maximise the impact of social protection systems in order to ‘keep families together’.
Through a comprehensive statistical analysis and literature review, this UNICEF report provides a child rights-based up-to-date review of the situation of children under the age of three in formal care in countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CEECIS). It examines regional and country level trends in the use of institutional care and family based alternative care options, in particular foster care.
This article presents the findings of an exploratory survey of community perceptions about foster care conducted in Udaipur City, Rajasthan, in India in order to assess the prospects for implementing foster care as an alternative to the dominant system of institutional care available to orphaned and abandoned children in India.
This major new tool is aimed at legislators, policy-makers and decision-makers, as well as professionals and care providers, to support the implementation of the Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children, endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2009. It explains the key thrusts of the Guidelines, outlines the kind of policy responses required, and describes ‘promising’ examples of efforts already made to apply them in diverse communities, countries, regions and cultures.
This new report by the World Policy Analysis brings together key findings from the book, Children’s Chances: How Countries Can Move From Surviving and Thriving, providing a global picture of what laws, policies, and programs countries have in place to address areas vital to children’s healthy development.
This study funded by Big Lottery and undertaken in partnership between the University of Bristol and Buttle UK, a grant-giving charity for vulnerable children, aims to fill gaps in understanding about the experiences of children living with kins, and in particular how children in informal kinship care view their situation.
This new study by Parenting in Africa Network (PAN) was conducted in three regions in Kenya (Nairobi, Mombasa and Busia), involving primary care givers of children age 0-8, children participating in Early Childhood Development and Education centers, and stakeholders and professionals involved in skillful parenting and early childhood development.
This report provides initial documentation of a pilot program launched by Bethany Christian Services in 2009 in Ethiopia. The pilot aims at moving children from institutional care to family-based care by developing alternative family care for non-relative children using a foster-to-adopt approach, working through a partnership between faith communities in Ethiopia and American faith congregations in the US.
The World Family Map Project is a new initiative by Child Trends to monitor the health of family life around the globe and to learn more about how family trends affect the well-being of children. Using internationally comparative data for low-, middle-, and high-income countries on key characteristics of families, including family structure, family socioeconomics, family processes, and family culture, the Map looks at trends in 45 countries, representing every region of the world.
The Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action were formulated in 2011-2012 by the Child Protection Working Group (CPWG), an inter-agency working group composed of child protection practitioners, academics, and policy makers working to support child protection work in humanitarian settings.
This policy brief by Save the Children introduces the background, goals, and guiding principles of the Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children endorsed by the UN General Assembly on the 20th of November 2009 while also explaining why family-based care is a preferred care arrangement over institutions. Furthermore, it suggests policy and practice recommendations to further protect children without appropriate care and strengthen families and communities.
This report presents the findings from a two-year peer research project which includes the testimony of more than 300 young people with care experience in Albania, the Czech Republic, Finland, and Poland. More than 40 care leavers from the four countries were selected and trained to play an active role in the all aspects of the projects. The interviews revealed widespread inadequacies regarding the process of leaving care, promoting the research team to draw up recommendations to address them.
This comprehensive manual provides an overview of child abandonment and its prevention in Europe, exploring the extent of child abandonment, possible reasons behind this phenomenon, the consequences of abandonment, and good practices in terms of prevention. Country specific reviews of child abandonment and its prevention are provided for 10 countries (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and the UK).
This research was conducted by Save the Children and UNICEF in five Rift Valley towns in Kenya in 2011 to better understand the links between emergencies and the perceived increase of children joining the streets. The authors call for an urgent, large-scale response to place children currently connected to the streets in durable situations such as family reintegration or other forms of care, in tandem with a multi-sectorial development approach to tackle and address the crisis at its root.
This guide provides step-by-step guidance and recommendations on how to identify and address gender-related issues that negatively affect vulnerable boys and girls in the local program context. It is intended to be a practical tool for staff involved in the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of care and support programs for vulnerable children.
The latest in EveryChild's Positive Care Choices series of papers on children's care options, Family First, calls for greater prioritisation to be given to supporting kinship carers and the children in their care, including ensuring such households are able to access social protection, and receive psycho-social and health care support and assistance with education where needed.
Published monthly, the BCN Newsletter is a vital source of information for people working on issues related to children without adequate family care.
30 September 2014
This case study illustrates the challenges of many children who are facing serious care and protection issues as a result of the impact of Ebola in Liberia and the efforts of international and national agencies to support them.
30 September 2014
This article by the BBC highlights the impact of this epidemic on children, including the death of parents and primary caregivers and the struggle to find alternative caregivers in a context of extreme fear of contamination.
Symposium on Children's Care
On Wednesday, September 24, the Better Care Network and the CPC Learning Network will co-host a one-day symposium entitled "The State of the Evidence on Children's Care." in New York City.
Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) has updated its Info4carekids website, a resource for looked-after children and young people. It now includes information about NICE’s quality standard on the health and wellbeing of looked-after children and young people. “Our lives, our standards” is a film that looks at the lives and experiences of a group of young people from the North East of England who are, or have experienced being in care. This film is also featured on the updated website.
Better Volunteering, Better Care
An interagency initiative exploring possibilities for change in encouraging ethical volunteerism and discouraging volunteerism that sustains orphanages.
A Child of the State
In this TED Talk, poet and playwright Lemn Sissay tells his story of growing up in foster care in the UK.
Orphans and Economics
This piece, written by Aselefech Evans, a woman adopted from Ethiopia when she was five years old, addresses the issue of family preservation and international adoption.
Egypt’s Orphans Struggle Long After Childhood Ends
This article highlights that the problem with Egypt's orphanages goes beyond isolated cases of abuse, and extends to how society as a whole views "children of sin".
Children brought to offset shortage of orphans in orphanage
Children have been brought into Kerala, the state in India, in order to supplement a shortage of orphans and “destitute children” at the orphanage at Mukkam at Kozhikode.
When the Church is Moved
Sarah Sagley Klotz shares her experience of growing up in a small Christian community in the US, learning about the needs of the world from sermons and videos, and later fully realizing the hardships of vulnerable and orphaned children in the developing world through her travels to Mongolia and North Africa.
Hanoi officials resettle embattled pagoda's population of orphans, elderly and disabled
Officials in Hanoi have recently investigated a philanthropic institution which housed children and older adults.
The Travel Book Gives This Orphanage Four Stars
This opinion piece from Al Jazeera America, discusses the “knotty mess of the orphanage industry built around Western volunteerism.”
Foster Care India Launches New Website
Foster Care India - an NGO operating in Rajasthan, India aimed at helping the children in need of care and protection in the area has launched its newest website.
Launch of the Child and Family Blog
The Future of Children, a collaboration of Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Brookings Institute, has launched a new project entitled “The Child & Family Blog.”
17 July 2014
Mexican Attorney General’s office is opening up an investigation into previous abuse allegations brought against a children’s home in Zamora, in the state of Michoacan, Mexico.
7 July 2014
The Prime Minister of Grenada presented the Call to Action, urging Heads of Governments of the Caribbean region to commit to ending the placement of children under three years of age in residential care institutions. The Communique issued at the conclusion the conference notes that the call was received and supported by the Heads of Government.
29 June 2014
The US President is preparing an emergency request to Congress for additional powers to enable the fast-track deportation of tens of thousands of unaccompanied children from Central America who are crossing the US border illegally.
14 June 2014
Recent controversy around the accuracy of a famed Cambodian woman’s story of sex trafficking has shone a light on the current state of many Cambodian orphanages and their duplicitous practices.
23 May 2014
The video presents a news clip from NTV Kenya reporting on recent changes in Kenyan adoption policy.
18 May 2014
This BBC article tells the story of two families, like many other families in China, who need intensive medical attention for their children but cannot afford it, and the difficult decisions they have to make.
India: Supreme Court Verdict On Adoptions Is A Turning Point
This article reviews the recent judgment by the Supreme Court of India, which ruled that all that all persons, irrespective of religion, caste and creed, have the option of adopting a child.
Ghana: Social Welfare closes down 48 children's homes
This article reports that the Department of Social Welfare (DSW) in Ghana has closed down 48 children’s homes and orphanages since 2007 because they were unregistered.
All orphanages to close down in Kazakhstan
This article by Tengrinnews reports that Kazakhstan plans to introduce major changes to its orphans and disadvantaged children programs with the closing of orphanages and a move towards family based alternatives.
UK: A child’s eye view of adoption
This article highlights the impact three recent television documentaries on British television have had on public awareness and understanding of foster care and adoption processes.
A Mother's Dream: The real life stories of India's baby-factory surrogate mothers
This documentary published by Journeyman Pictures investigates the reality behind India's commercial baby surrogate industry.
Ending harmful institutions for children in Georgia
This video by Save the Children highlights the major reforms ongoing in Georgia to end harmful child institutionalisation and the work of its project to support the Government in this reform process.
Family for Every Child has commissioned a research study to identify gaps in knowledge and understanding around foster care and is seeking literature, both published and unpublished ‘grey’ literature, covering the research questions and foster care in general.New Zealand: Disabled kids 'abandoned'
This article highlights the efforts of a lobby group in New Zealand, CCS Disability Action, which is demanding an amendment as part of sweeping child protection reforms, arguing that children with high needs are being abandoned and denied their right to a family life.
Cambodia: child protection workers call for end to ‘orphanage tourism’
Child protection and NGO workers are pleading with tourists and volunteers to stay away from orphanages in Cambodia, claiming so-called “orphanage tourism” damages the children and enables exploitation.
Guidelines for partner operators on volunteering directly with vulnerable children
Responsibletravel.com, a travel company operating from the UK since 2001 has issued Guidelines for partner operators for volunteering directly with vulnerable children, including in the context of orphanage volunteering.
The Dangers of Voluntourism: When Good Intentions Are Not Enough
In this article for Prism Magazine, a publication of Evangelical for Social Action, the authors ask challenging questions about the role of 'orphanage tourism', where Westerners visit or volunteer to work at a residential care center (orphanage) in the developing world, whether the trip is arranged by a tour or travel company, a nonprofit, or by a church.
NEPAL 'Voluntourism': The Orphan Business
This documentary produced for Channel 4 Television goes undercover to explore the reality behind 'Voluntourism' in Nepal.
Key Messages for Caregivers Messages developed by the Global Child Protection Cluster in response to Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) in the Philippines (in English, Filipino, Waray, Ilongo and Cebuano).
On Tuesday, October 22rd, the NGO Committee on UNICEF’s Working Group on Children without Parental Care in collaboration with the Office of the Special Representative to the Secretary-General on Violence against Children and the Permanent UN Missions of Austria and Brazil hosted an event at the UN to review progress on the implementation of the guidelines and share experiences from various regional perspectives.
An interview with Jordanian journalist, Hanan Khandagji, who uncovered harrowing child abuse cases while researching institutions for disabled children.
A new report by the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) which inspects children's social care in England, including child protection services, said more needed to be done to address "incompetent and ineffective" leadership in children's services.
The Commissioner for Children's Rights under the Russian President and the First Deputy Chairwoman of the State Duma Committee on Family, Women and Children, speak about changes in the field of adoptions and alternative care in Russia during the recent years.
U.S. lawmakers call for federal action to prevent parents from giving unwanted adopted children to strangers met on the Internet, and the Illinois attorney general urged Facebook and Yahoo to police online groups where children may be advertised.
This series of articles by Reuters investigates the disturbing practice of 'private re-homing' of adopted children in the USA, particularly affecting children adopted from overseas.
In a series of articles looking at different sides of the debate on the use of Inter-country adoption in the U.S., CNN hears from families, children and experts on its decline and whether the trend could –or should- be reversed.
This article in the Guardian reports on a new bill passed by parliamentarian in Iran that includes a clause that allows a man to marry his adopted daughter and while she is as young as 13 years.
In this article for the New York Review of Books, the Nobel Prize economist Amartya Sen discusses India’s response to the gang rape of a young medical student in Delhi and the complex reality of entrenched gender inequality that underlies violence against women and girls in that country.
This Washington Post article discusses the findings from a major report by the National Academy of Science on child abuse and neglect that found that advances in brain research showed that child abuse and neglect damages not only in the way a developing child’s brain functions, but changes the actual structure of the brain itself.
This article reviews trends in the use of institutional care for children and highlights that a global shift away from its use is underway, although considerable challenges remain and some countries continue to "buck the trend".
Two baby girls were given over to new adoptive parents live on a television program in Pakistan. The host claims that the babies were not given away as a ploy for ratings, but to unite children in need of a home with new parents looking to welcome them.
One “ethically-minded” tourism company in the UK is shutting down 10 orphanage tours because the firm believes that “orphanage volunteers, despite their best intentions, are part of the problem rather than the solution for children living in poverty throughout the world."
According to the article, there are roughly 2,000 illegal adoptions in Poland every year. The commissioner on children’s rights is calling for reform of the adoption law to reduce this number but government ministries seem thus far undecided on how to address this issue.
The well known radio show This American Life has collaborated with Planet Money to investigate the work of a charity called GiveDirectly. Instead of funding schools or wells or livestock, it has decided to just give money directly to the poor people who need it, and let them decide how to spend it.
UNICEF launched its “#ENDviolence against children” campaign. One of the biggest promotions of the campaign is a one-minute public service announcement (PSA), a video narrated by the well-known film actor Liam Neeson.
This article features the personal stories of parents representing two different experiences of child trafficking in China and its relationship to adoption, both domestic and inter-country.
Over 40 international and national NGOs and networks, including BCN, have issued a joint call to member States of the United Nations General Assembly (UN GA) to focus the 2014 Resolution on the Rights of the Child on strengthening family care and providing appropriate alternative care for children.
This Public Service Announcement (PSA), produced by Disability Rights International, is part of the organization’s “Worldwide Campaign to End the Institutionalization of Children.”
This article discusses challenges in the implementation of the Rwanda National Strategy for Child Care Reform (MIGEPROF) adopted in 2010. The reforms aim at transforming Rwanda's current child care and protection system into a family-based one.
International children’s charity Hope and Homes for Children has received grants totalling £543,651 from the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) to help establish family-based care services for abandoned children in Sudan.
The state cabinet of Goa, India recently approved a foster care scheme to assist children deprived of parental care or of the care of guardians, and in need of protection.
This article reports on research conducted by the TV Programme Panorama on some of the current practices and standards in the children’s residential care system in England, with findings described by a charity representing children in care as “extremely worrying”.
The ‘Opening Doors for Europe’s Children’ campaign, led by Eurochild and Hope and Homes for Children seeks to achieve significant progress in policy, legislation and funding at EU and national levels to dismantle institutional care systems and ensure that children are no longer separated from their parents as a consequence of poverty and social exclusion.
On June 14, 2013, the General Assembly submitted a report in advance of its sixty-eighth session as a contribution to the High-level Meeting of the Assembly on the realization of the Millennium Development Goals and other internationally agreed development goals for persons with disabilities. The report reviews good practices and existing approaches to disability-inclusive development and concludes by recommending steps to include disability as an integral part of all development efforts, with a view to contributing to an action-oriented outcome document of the upcoming High-level Meeting.
Illuminating many of the observations and conclusions from the UNICEF State of the World’s Children report on children with disabilities, the New Straits Times has published an article on the state of children with disabilities in Vietnam.
This article, published in the Korea Herald, highlights the recent reforms in Korea’s often-criticized international adoption policy, including some reforms that will help to make the adoption process more transparent.
This Op-Ed piece indicates the authors’ views on the Korean Minister of Health and Welfare’s recent signing of the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption. The article speaks to the four ways in which the authors believe the signing of the Convention, and its ultimate ratification and implementation in Korea, would improve the child welfare situation.
This article, published in the New York Times on May 14, 2013, brings to light a new trend in U.S. adoption: older adults who choose to adopt children, particularly older children and adolescents.
The grand mufti and head of the Fatwa department at the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department in Dubai called on Emiratis to come forward to foster abandoned children. Speaking at a forum to discuss children of unknown parentage, Dr. Al Haddad stated that, although adoption is not permitted in Islam, fostering is a moral obligation.
The Community Development Authority (CDA) in Dubai has announced new fostering rules for the care of abandoned children. Professional foster mothers will look after children in groups of up to six children in a family setting until more permanent surrogate families can be found for them.
This news report highlights the increasing trend towards domestic adoption in Kenya, despite the country’s stringent adoption laws and rigorous procedures for families to adopt. The article discusses the requirements and processes to adopt and the changes in cultural attitudes and lifestyle that may be behind this increase.
This article from the Times of India reports that the Central Adoption Resource Authority in India is planning to open 8 new adoption centers in Bihar, acting on the recommendation of the state authorities, to respond to increasing number of domestic adoptions. Most of the children adopted, however, are boys and children without disabilities, although more girls are being abandoned.
In this article for the magazine Mother Jones, Kathryn Joyce the author of a recently published book on the issue titled The Child Catchers: Rescue, Trafficking, and the New Gospel of Adoption chronicles the rapidly growing evangelical movement for international adoption in the United States, and its impact on children and their families, with a particular focus on Liberia.
By highlighting the recent court ruling made in an appeal to the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg against a finding by the Children's Court in Krugersdorp in 2011, this news report introduces South Africa’s efforts to make grandparents who care for their grandchildren eligible for foster care grants.
This news report by the Sydney Morning Herald highlights the trend in which orphanages in Cambodia are often run as businesses where children are being used as economic assets to attract tourists and volunteers. It brings to light the trend of increased number of orphanages while the actual number of orphans is on a decline.
This article by the Copenhagen Post reports that adoptions from an Ethiopian orphanage through a Danish adoption agency were recently halted by the Danish Social and Integration minister following recent reports of child neglect at the institution and revelations of the use of ‘child harvesters’ to convince families to put their children up for adoption.
This op-ed written by two U.S. Congresswomen puts forward the case for the adoption of the Help Separated Families Act, a bill introduced by them in Congress that would make it harder to terminate parental rights solely based on immigration status, and would also allow foster children to be placed in the best homes for them, regardless of the immigration status of the potential guardian.
Following on her New York Times piece in December, 2012, on efforts to try to close down orphanages in Haiti, Emily Brennan discusses debates in the evangelical movement on the approaches used to what some Christian leaders call “orphan care.”
A consensus is developing among Haitian government officials and children’s advocates that a new approach is required to reduce the number of orphanages. But the transition is not easy, and some question whether the country is ready for it.
Following an ambitious agenda to remove all children from residential care, Rwandan government is on pace.
When orphans in Ukraine reach adulthood, some are deemed "incapacitated" - a label that consigns them to a life in institutions. But many of these young people may have nothing wrong with them at all. It is an official classification in Ukraine that critics say strips the bearer of basic human rights.
Throughout Cambodia well-intentioned volunteers have helped to create a surge in the number of residential care homes as impoverished parents are tempted into giving up their children in response to promises of a Western-style upbringing and education.