A guardian is a legally appointed adult representative for a child. The guardian's function is to ensure that a child’s rights are upheld and the child's best interests are protected. The existence, process and duties of a guardian will vary from country to country. When no formal guardian system exists, alternative systems can be created for having a legally recognised representative for a child. This is particularly important when children are likely to be orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS, or unprotected by adult caretakers such as child-headed households.  


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John Simmonds, Judith Harwin, Rebecca Brown & Karen Broadhurst - Nuffield Family Justice Observatory & CoramBAAF,

This rapid evidence review is intended to contribute to the drafting of authoritative guidance to assist courts in the UK in making Special Guardianship Orders (SGOs) and to help inform decision-making by frontline practitioners.

Shanshan Guan, Guosheng Deng - Children and Youth Services Review,

In this study, the outcomes of a whole-community intervention program targeted at improving the well-being of LBC and other rural children ages 7–18 were examined through a quasi-experimental evaluation.

Professor Judith Harwin, Dr Bachar Alrouh, Ms Lily Golding, Ms Tricia McQuarrie, Professor Karen Broadhurst and Dr Linda Cusworth - Centre for Child and Family Justice Research, Lancaster University,

This report is about the use of ‘family orders’ to support family reunification and placement with family and friends as outcomes of S31 care and supervision proceedings brought under the UK Children Act 1989. The over-arching aim of this study is to understand the opportunities, challenges and outcomes of these orders, and their use at national and regional level.

Wei Wu, Guangbo Qu, Lingling Wang, Xue Tang, Ye‐Huan Sun - Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health,

The aims of this study were to systematically evaluate and comparatively analyse the mental health status of left‐behind children (LBC) in China and to provide a scientific basis for mental intervention and healthy education for LBC.

Erica Newman - AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples,

This article investigates the colonialist definitions of the terms “orphan” and “adoption”, contrasting them with how the traditional practice of child circulation in Fiji cared for orphaned children.

Julia Hernández, Jill Duerr Berrick - Families in Society: The Journal of Contemporary Social Services,

Although the extant literature provides rough estimates of the number and characteristics of children living in most care arrangements, research on kinship probate guardianship is especially scarce. This article focuses on kinship probate guardianship in an effort to build the literature on this understudied population.

Anisa Mahmoudi & Tshegofatso Tracy Mothapo - Kids Empowerment ,

This report from Kids Empowerment reviews the reception of children on the move in South Africa.

Better Care Network,

This country care review includes the care related Concluding Observations adopted by the Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Frank Ainsworth and Patricia Hansen - Children Australia,

This article reviews developments in the Australian NSW child protection system which aim to reduce the number of children in state care.

Rofiah Ololade Sarumi & Ann Strode - Perspectives on the Legal Guardianship of Children in Côte d'Ivoire, South Africa, and Uganda,

This chapter looks at what the international law instruments recommend regarding the appointment of legal guardians. It provides an audit of the instruments which are applicable to the regulation of the appointment of legal guardians for children both at the global and regional levels.