Key messages and guidance to prevent and respond to COVID-19

Changing the Way We Care

This document features key messages including critical information about keeping children safe and healthy during the pandemic. Furthermore, the content addresses the psychosocial concerns and increased child protection risks that can occur as a result of measures put in place to prevent the spread and negative impact of COVID-19. The messages are designed for use by country child protection actors, such as public child protection officers, directors of residential care facilities and government and civil society actors that work with vulnerable children and families. The information included herein should guide targeting of activities and services for vulnerable children and families. These messages have been informed by existing guidance provided by the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and others, and were originally drafted by an inter-agency Technical Working Group convened by the National Council for Children’s Services and UNICEF in Kenya. The content is framed by applicable international standards, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children and the 2019 Child Protection Minimum Standards.

The guidance is designed to inform child protection actors and includes information targeting the following groups:

  • Children: Key messages about COVID-19

  • Parents and other caregivers: Key messages about COVID-19 and preventing violence in the home and promoting online safety

  • Special Audiences: Key messages about COVID-19 for those working or caring for:

    o Children with disabilities
    o Children in residential care facilities; and
    o Children who have exited care facilities, including care leavers

  • Child protection and care organizations: Programming considerations related to child protection and care during the pandemic.

  • Case management practitioners: guidance on virtual monitoring of children and families and

This guidance should be considered a living document and will be updated as new information is made available. Please note that for all health-related information, refer to the World Health Organization or your local Ministry of Health.