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Rwanda

Demographic Data

  • Total population: 11.34 million
  • Population under 15 years: 41%
  • Life Expectancy at Birth: 64 years
  • Human Development Index: 163 out of 188
  • World Bank Status: Low income
  • HIV/AIDS Prevalence: 2.8 %
  • Mean Household Composition: 4.3 persons
  • Female-Headed Households: 31%
  • Early Marriage (% of children married by 18 years): 14%

Sources: World Bank, UNICEF, UNDP HDR 2015, DHS 2014/2015

Demographic Data

43.7
Gini Coefficiency
World Bank, 2016
12.63 million
Total Population
World Bank, 2019
45%
Percent Population Under 18
 
UNICEF
low-income country
World Bank GNI Status
World Bank, 2019
0.536
Low Human Development
Human Development Index
UNDP
38.2%
Living Below Poverty Line
 
World Bank, 2016
4.3
People
Median Household Size
DHS, 2015

Children's Living Arrangement

Children's Living Arrangements

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%
Country
 
NO SOURCE GIVEN
63.2%
Living with Both Parents
 
DHS 2014-2015
21.9%
Living with Mother Only
 
DHS 2014-2015
2.2%
Living with Father Only
 
DHS 2014-2015
12%
Living with Neither Parent
 
DHS 2014-2015
2.4%
Living in Kinship Care with One Parent Dead
 
DHS 2014-2015
1%
Living in Kinship Care with Both Parents Dead
 
DHS 2014-2015
%
Effective
 
NO SOURCE GIVEN

Children Living without Biological Parent

Children Living Without Biological Parents

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Children at Risk of Separation

Children at Risk of Separation

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Formal Alternative Care Arrangements

Formal Alternative Care Arrangements

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Settings
Children
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Settings
Children
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Formal Family-Based Care
0 Settings
0 Children
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Foster Care
0 Settings
19 Children
Better Care Network, 2015
Kinship Care
0 Settings
0 Children
NO SOURCE GIVEN
0 Settings
0 Children
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Residential care facilities for children
33 Settings
3323 Children
i
A 2012 national assessment on registered residential care facilities for children found that 3,323 children and young adults resided in 33 such facilities, 11 per cent of whom were children under three years of age and 37 per cent aged 0–3 at the time of placement. Statistics provided by a key informant in March 2014 showed that the original number of children in care had been reduced from 3,323 (in 2012) to 1,457 in March 2014.
Hope and Homes for Children, 2012
Residential care facilities for persons with disabilities
42 Settings
2712 Children
Better Care Network, 2015
Centres for street children
25 Settings
1196 Children
NCC, 2013
Adult detention centres
0 Settings
117 Children
i
117 children in adult detention centres (children living with their mothers in detention).
NCC, 2013

Adoption

NO DATA AVAIABLE
Country
NO SOURCE GIVEN
--
children
Domestic Adoption
Better Care Network, 2015
i
Key informants noted that formal domestic adoption is growing.
302
children
Inter-country Adoption
Better Care Network, 2015
i
Date range: 2003-2011. Inter-country adoption is not currently practiced in Rwanda as there has been a moratorium in place since 2010.
NO DATA AVAIABLE
Effective
NO SOURCE GIVEN

Key Reform Indicators/Progress Markers

Country
 
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Effective
 
NO SOURCE GIVEN
NO DATA AVAILABLE
Social Welfare Spending
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Alternative Care Policy in line with the 2009 Guidelines
 
Yes
Law 54/2011 on the Rights and Protection of the Child and the Integrated Child Rights Policy and Strategic Plan (2011).
i
Rwanda has a strong, child rights-based legal and policy framework that has been strengthened and enhanced since 2010 to include a focus on the primary role of the family and family strengthening, family-based alternative care and poverty reduction. This includes the passage of two laws, the Child Rights and Protection Policy, and three national strategies encompassing child-care reform, family promotion and poverty reduction. Together these form a holistic, family-centred framework that includes preventive and response components in support of the care-reform effort. There is also strong support for social protection and early childhood development – this will further reinforce the care-reform effort by supporting the prevention of separation, and helping build the resilience and competencies of Rwandan families. Law 54/2011 on the Rights and Protection of the Child includes specific articles relating to prevention of separation, family support, alternative care and the social integration of children, many recognizing the specific rights of children in care.
Centralised authority on adoption
 
Limited
NCC
i
The NCC has an oversight role in domestic and inter-country adoption processes. There are no centralized data on the number of domestic adoptions in Rwanda. To date, formal domestic adoption has been processed at the sector level. Local authorities approve this and then the primary court approves the final legal process. At the time of writing, there was no system in place for collating information regarding the number of domestic adoptions upwards to national level.
Commitment to Deinstitutionalistion/Reforms
 
Yes
NO SOURCE GIVEN
i
Child-care reform has been prioritized by the highest level of government (i.e. by the President and Prime Minister), beginning with a National Children’s Forum where the issue of residential care was prioritized by children (BCN, 2015). The most recent child-care reform process was initiated in 2010. This phase was prompted by several key developments between 2010 and 2012. These included: the strengthening of a strong child rights-based legal and policy framework through the passage of the landmark Law 54/2011 on the Rights and Protection of the Child; accession to the 1993 Hague Convention for the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-country Adoption (HCIA); a successful pilot deinstitutionalization effort and a National Study on Residential Care; the establishment of the National Commission for Children (NCC) through the passage of Law 22/2011; and children’s voices advocating for family-based care for children at the 2011 National Children’s Summit.
Comprehensive child protection law
 
Yes
Law 54/2011 on the Rights and Protection of the Child and the Integrated Child Rights Policy and Strategic Plan (2011).
i
Rwanda has a strong, child rights-based legal and policy framework that has been strengthened and enhanced since 2010 to include a focus on the primary role of the family and family strengthening, family-based alternative care and poverty reduction. This includes the passage of two laws, the Child Rights and Protection Policy, and three national strategies encompassing child-care reform, family promotion and poverty reduction. Together these form a holistic, family-centred framework that includes preventive and response components in support of the care-reform effort. There is also strong support for social protection and early childhood development – this will further reinforce the care-reform effort by supporting the prevention of separation, and helping build the resilience and competencies of Rwandan families.
Continuum of alternative care services available
 
Partly
NO SOURCE GIVEN
i
Rwanda has a range of formal alternative care options for children including foster care, guardianship and residential care (including temporary shelter for street children). the ICRP in Article 2.6.1 recognizes and prioritizes the following alternative care options: a: Kinship care (children without parents placed in the care of extended family); b: Formal adoption within community/country; c: Placement in foster care within their communities; d: Inter-country adoption in accordance with international and national guidelines; and e: Institutional care as a last resort, with continuous effort placed on finding a different option. Because the foster-care guidelines have yet to be finalized, this care option appears to be at a relatively nascent stage and would benefit from more attention and thought around the different models of foster-care placements (e.g., emergency, short-term and long-term) and how those care options will be developed, provided and managed. Formal care is still primarily residential care, but this is changing as government encourages other forms of care and some local governments and/or residential care facilities are refusing new entrants.
Data System
 
Limited
NO SOURCE GIVEN
i
To date, several different mechanisms have been used to collect information related to child protection and care, but these have yet to be collated into one central database. The NCC has a mandate to collect data related to children’s rights and protection. The NCC is also responsible for overseeing the child-rights data gathering and management, together with MIGEPROF and the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda. The NCC is mandated to develop, in partnershipwith the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda, a data management system for regular status reports on children and their rights. In 2014, the NCC collected data on Most Vulnerable Children. That data will be entered into the MVC database, will be analysed and will help to generate useful information that will be used by partners/Government to address the needs of the vulnerable children
Existence of a regulatory body and regulatory system
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Gatekeeping mechanism/policy
 
Mostly
NO SOURCE GIVEN
i
Gatekeeping mechanisms have been developed and piloted in several districts and sectors across the country. The pilot deinstitutionalization project of HHC established child-care networks to function as gatekeeping mechanisms, and this model is being replicated – although it is likely to be named differently and address not just care issues but also child protection concerns. Beginning in 2014, the government has launched community based child protection structures (Inshuti Z’Umuryango (IZ)) that include para social work volunteers with the responsibility of safeguarding the rights of all children at village, cell and sector levels and paying particular attention to those at risk of separation and children whom have been reintegrated. Although volunteer in nature the IZ are linked with the formal sector
Means of tracking progress with reforms
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Moratorium on admission into institutions for children under 3
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Moratorium on new institutions
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
National Action Plan
 
Yes
Strategy for Child Care Reform (2012); Tubarerere Mu Muryangyo (TMM) Let’s Raise Children in Families!
i
Led by the government, with active support from UNICEF, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and faith-based organizations (FBOs), the TMM is the guiding framework for the reform process.
National Standards of Care
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Prevention of Separation Services available
 
Yes
NO SOURCE GIVEN
i
Family strengthening services in Rwanda include: social protection and cash transfer programs, education enrolment, the Genocide Survivors Support and Assistance Fund (FARG), Positive deviance hearth groups (a community-based approach to address malnutrition in children under 5); Farmer field schools (FFS): FFS is a proven strategy for increasing household food production; Internal savings and lending groups (ISLGs), The DCOF-funded Ishema Mu Muryango (Pride for the Family) reintegration and family strengthening program, Hope and Homes for Children's Community Hub model, and more.
Support for careleavers (in legislation and in practice)
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN

Social Work Force

Workers
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Country
Social Work Degree Programmes
 
Yes
Source: Better Care Network, 2015
Social Service Workforce Training
 
Yes
Source: Better Care Network, 2015
Workers
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Effective
A national workforce assessment and analysis carried out within the past four years
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN
A system of licensing/registration of social service professionals
 
No Data
NO SOURCE GIVEN

Key Stakeholders

Country
Government
Civil Society Organisations
Effective

Other Relevant Reforms

Other Relevant Reforms

Add New Data Data and Resources
Effective
NO SOURCE GIVEN
Social Protection
i
Vision 2020 Umurenge Programme (VUP) cash transfer program. The new Social Protection Policy was being drafted at the time of writing of the Rwanda Country Care Profile (Better Care Network, 2015) by a multisectoral group and includes children as a primary target group for social protection initiatives.
Source: Better Care Network, 2015

Key Research Sources

Country
Effective

Drivers of Institutionalisation

Drivers of Institutionaliziation

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Country
Push Factors
Pull Factors
Effective

Displaying 1 - 10 of 129

List of Organisations

UNICEF,

The overall objective of the consultancy is to support the inclusion of children with disabilities in the de-institutionalization and family-based care and community support and lead the internal and external coordination efforts.

Boston College School of Social Work Research Program on Children and Adversity,

The Research Program on Children and Adversity at Boston College is seeking Research Associates for the Early Child Development & Violence Prevention Home-Visiting Implementaton Science project inn Rwanda.

UNICEF,

UNICEF is seeking a senior and well experienced consultant to facilitate the child protection case management situation analysis, including contextually relevant practical recommendations on the development of a national child protection case management framework and system.

UNICEF,

UNICEF is seeking an experienced national consultant to work with and support an international consultant in the facilitation of child protection case management situation analysis, including contextually relevant practical recommendations on the development of a national child protection case management framework and system.

UNICEF Rwanda,

The main objective of this consultancy is to provide necessary national capacity and hands-on technical support to government social workforce working on the reintegration of children with disabilities from two institutions to family-based care through on-job coaching and mentorship.

UNICEF Rwanda,

The main objective of this consultancy is to provide necessary national capacity and hands-on technical support to government social workforce working on the reintegration of children with disabilities from two institutions to family-based care.

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, as well as other care-related concluding observations, ratification dates, and links to the Universal Periodic Review and Hague Intercountry Adoption Country Profile.

CNBC Africa,

In this brief segment, CNBC Africa’s Arnold Kwizera speaks with the CEO of Hope and Homes for Children, Mark Waddington, about the harmful impacts of orphanages on children, families, and communities, and the need to move to family-based care.

The Society for AIDS In Africa (SAA), the custodian of ICASA, and the Government of Rwanda,

The 20th International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa is taking place in Kigali, Rwanda at Kigali Convention Centre. 

BBC News,

This video from BBC News tells the stories of mixed-race children in Africa who were separated from their mothers, taken from their countries of origin, and brought to live with "host families" in Belgium during the Belgian colonial period.