International Parent Advocacy Network (IPAN)

The International Parent Advocacy Network (IPAN) works to increase the influence of parents in child welfare decision making by supporting organizations and activities that promote parent advocacy and the influence and power of parents in child welfare. IPAN’s work will help ensure that children’s, parents’ and families’ needs are met and that their rights are protected.


Where they operate

Organization Type

Main Areas of Work

What They Do


IPAN aims to increase the power of parents impacted by child protective systems. They support parents and organizations that mobilize against excessive surveillance and family separation through state care and adoption. IPAN works to empower parents around the world, so that their voices are heard and their rights protected.

IPAN will undertake the following activities:

  1. Promoting and developing parent advocacy globally, in low, middle and high-income countries, as well as regionally and locally.
  2. Providing a means for individuals and organisations involved in parent advocacy to share information and provide mutual support. This will be done through an on-line network, a website, workshops and conferences.
  3. Sharing lessons learned, examples of good practice and other resources on parental advocacy, child welfare, and related fields.
  4. Campaigning to strengthen the role of parents in child welfare systems and to promote parent advocacy. This includes support for activism to promote improvements in child welfare policy and practice to improve the well-being of children and families.
  5. Workshops and training on parents’ rights and parent participation.
  6. Publishing materials on parent advocacy.
  7. Holding conferences and training events.
  8. Providing consultation on parent advocacy and eventually creating a center to train parents to be parent advocates.
  9. Providing a website, social media, and other means to promote the goals, values and activities of parent advocacy.
  10. Promoting and supporting research and evaluation of parent advocacy.
  11. Any other activities aimed at promoting and developing parent advocacy that protect the rights of parents and meet the needs of their children and families.

Organization Resources

International Parent Advocacy Network (IPAN) and Rise

The International Parent Advocacy Network (IPAN) and Rise have developed this toolkit for advocacy by parents whose families have been harmed by child welfare systems worldwide

Better Care Network and International Parent Advocacy Network (IPAN)

Promoting parent and child participation is central to achieving children’s rights. This review of the literature and program documentation presents evidence on the role of parent advocacy in achieving better outcomes for children and their families in child welfare.