on Developing indicators for monitoring the context & policy situation

Developing indicators for
monitoring the context &
policy situation for
children without parental
care (2012)
Carola Eyber & Maggie Brown (INTRAC) for
Coalition Family for EveryChild
Sections of this presentation:
1)Background & purpose of the
2)Methodology: Process of
identifying indicators & data
3)Key findings (brief)
4)Key challenges: Methodological
& context/policy related
Section 1:
Background & purpose
of the report
In 2011 EveryChild together with partner organisations
formed an international coalition Family for EveryChild. This
Coalition is to transform into an Alliance in 2014 which will
take on the advocacy role for children without parental care
Aims of the Coalition: to mobilise knowledge, skills
and resources so that more children without parental
care, or at risk of losing parental care, can grow up in
caring families or in appropriate alternative care.
EveryChild as a member of this Coalition commissioned a
context & policy study which would allow the Coalition and
future Alliance to assess and monitor its progress and
achievements in future.
Purpose of the Context & Policy
Analysis report
1) To measure trends and progress in relation to outcomes
and impacts for and with children over time
2) To inform advocacy targets such as:
 The situation on children under 3 in institutions
 The major gaps and issues in relation to compliance
with the UN Guidelines for all groups of CWPC
 To contribute to debates on the post MDG agenda
3) To provide comparative information across Coalition
Member countries that will help with defining country and
regional level priority issues
4) To identify data gaps at national level and to review
national data systems.
Countries for which baseline
indicators were collected
 Egypt
 Ethiopia
 South Africa
 Brazil
 Mexico
 Guyana
 India
 Russian Federation
 Tajikistan
 Indonesia
Context & policy situation in
relation to:
Seven groups of children without parental/adequate
1. Children in institutions
2. Children in foster care
3. Children in kinship care
4. Children who are adopted
5. Children in detention
6. Children living on streets
7. Children living with exploitative employers
+ policies for preventing separation
Section 2:
Methodology: Process
of identifying
indicators & data
Process of identifying indicators
 Identified those categories of children for which
established indicators existed: Better Care Network
indicators for Formal Care and on the Juvenile Justice
Indicators (UNICEF)
 Searched guidelines and policy documents for potential
indicators and compiled these for each category
 Focused here predominantly on first 3 categories &
indicators of risk of separation
 Consulted Coalition members on the proposed indicators
and removed/added as per suggestions
Decided to focus on:
1) country context indicators
2) policy indicators and
3) quantitative impact indicators
Country context indicators
1) Poverty data by Coalition member country:
 Poverty (% of population living on less than $2,- a day)
 Under 5 mortality rate
 Net migration rate
 Child labour
2) Violence, abuse & neglect indicators by Coalition
member country:
 Acceptance of violence against children,
 Justification of wife beating
 Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting
3) Disability:
 Under 5s underweight (moderate and severe)
 % pregnant women who attend 4 ante natal appointments
 % skilled attendant at birth
 % fully immunized against polio (as example of prevention by
 % exclusively breastfed (0-6 months)
 % Vitamin A supplement coverage rate
4) HIV/AIDS and maternal mortality
 Number people living with HIV (UNAIDS)
 Women aged 15 and over living with HIV (UNAIDS)
 % adult prevalence of HIV aged 15-49 years (UNICEF/ UNAIDS)
 % of eligible adults and children currently receiving ART (UNAIDS
 % known to be on ART treatment 12 months after initiating treatment
 Maternal mortality per 100,000 live births (UNICEF)
5) Access to good quality education
 Pre-primary access (gross enrolment).
 Net attendance rate for enrolled children at primary
 Survival rate to last primary grade (survey data)
6)Armed conflict and natural disasters
 Numbers of population affected by disasters in
previous year
 Internally displaced population in previous year
 Number of children under 18 years displaced or
refugees within the country
7) Adolescent births, overcrowding and
 Adolescent birth rate which is defined as the number of
births per 100,000 girls aged 15-19
 The percentage of households with 8 or more members
indicating possible overcrowding
 Number of orphans due to all causes
 The percentage of all children who are orphaned or one
or both parents
Impact indicators
1) Children living without parents
in household
DHS surveys provide information:
 The percentage of children living without either
parent in the household
 The percentage of children not living with either
parent by age group
Impact indicators
2) Children in residential care
Children entering
residential care
Number of children
entering residential
care during a 12
month period per
100,00 child
Admin data or
purposive survey
Children living in
Residential Care
Number of children
living in residential
care on a given
date per 100,000
child population.
Admin data or
purposive survey
& census data
Children leaving
residential care for a
family placement*
Proportion of all children (< Admin data or
15 years) leaving
purposive survey
residential care for a family
placement, including
reunification, in a 12
month period.
Ratio of children in
residential versus
family based care
Proportion of all children in
formal care who are
currently accommodated in
residential care
Children under 3
years in residential
Number of children under 3
years in residential care +
percentage of children
under 3 in relation to all
children in residential care
3) Children in alternative formal care
Children entering
formal alternative
family care
Number of children entering
formal family care during a 12
month period per 100,000 child
data or
Children living in
formal alternative
family care
Number of children living in
formal foster care or
guardianship on a given date
per 100,000 child population
Children leaving
alternative family
care for a permanent
family placement
Proportion of all children < 15 years
leaving formal alternative family
care for a permanent family
placement in 12 months period
Contact with parents
family and
Percentage of children in
formal alternative family care
who have been visited by
family and friends (from
community of origin) in last 3
Survey of
sample of
children in
family care
Care plans
% of children who have a)
passed through formal
assessment process and b)
have an individual care plan.
Survey of
sample of
children in
4) Children in informal kinship
cared for in
kinship care
% of children in all households
surveyed whose parents are not
present (by age & gender)
% of children in kinship care
whose mother and father have
both died (by age & gender)
Survey – DHS
Census, MICS
% of HH providing kinship care
with regular and predictable access Survey or some
to cash or kind transfers
% of HH providing kinship care
have received family support
services over past 12 months
Survey or UNICEF
HIV Stocktaking
Policy & legislation indicators on
preventing separation
 Policies on alternative care prioritise support for parents and
extended families (over institutional care or foster care)
 Provision of family strengthening services (such as
parenting skills, pre-school care, substance abuse treatment,
conflict resolution).
 Provision for child sensitive social protection (such as
predictable social transfers and programmes to ensure access to
essential services)
 National disaster preparedness policies include reference
to the importance of preventing family separation and
providing alternative family based care for children without
parental care.
Policy & legislation indicators on
preventing separation ctd.
 National Plans of Action for Orphans and Vulnerable
Children should include reference to alternative care and
the importance of family based care.
 Training and capacity building of social work
professionals and para professionals in order to fulfil
core functions of child protection, support to carers,
gatekeeping, care planning and service management.
 Provision for the diversion of juveniles from court
procedures and from detention, as well as provision for
the after care of juveniles released from detention.
On the quality of alternative care
of children
• Strategies for developing alternatives to large scale
• The development of a wide range of care options for
CWPC and a specific policy that no under 3s
• should be in residential care
• Orientation on care planning and standards for the
regular review of care
• Establish systems for the registration and regulation
of foster carers at district and national levels
On the quality of alternative care
of children ctd.
• Establish systems for the registration/ regulation
of all residential institutions and group homes
• Acknowledge the importance of child participation
in decisions regarding care
• Make explicit reference to the importance of providing
high quality care for children with disabilities.
• Policies and standards on domestic adoption and
ratification of the Hague Convention on
international adoption.
Process of data collection:
 Identifying trustworthy & standardised data
 Accessing DHS data
 Undertook some calculation of DHS data
(potential is there for this to be done for some
of the variables/indicators)
 Key actors in-country as sources of data,
including Coalition members
 Investigate relationship between policy,
legislation & monitoring of implementation
Sources of information
Where possible one single source of information has
been used:
 UNICEF MICS country profiles:
 UNICEF member country reports on specific issues (various
 Periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child
(CRC Report): http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/crc/
 DHS data: (usually in the form of Country reports :
 National census data (various websites)
 Child Rights Information Network: http://www.crin.org/
 Better Care Network: http://www.crin.org/bcn/
 Country-specific Ministries on child, youth, welfare,
development, women, health, education (various websites)
 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre: http://www.unicefirc.org/
 TransMonEE for Central & Eastern Europe:
Information that was difficult to
 Child participation in decision-making
 Children who are orphans in formal care, CHH
 Violence & abuse of children
 Children under 3 in residential care
 Quality of care
 Contact with parents
 Children living with exploitative employers
Section 3:
Key findings
Key findings
 Reasons for children losing parental care are
complex, context specific and interactive
 Rates of children living in institutions: no linear
relationship with poverty statistics
 Disability appears to be a much more significant factor
in losing parental care, especially to institutions, in some
countries than others.
 The country that has the highest percentage of children
living without both parents, South Africa at 23%, also
has an extensive system of grants to foster carers, the
majority of whom are relatives.
 In relation to children under five years in
institutions, rates are especially high in Brazil, Egypt
and Mexico, all of which feature within the groups of
countries with the lowest overall rates of children in
Key findings ctd.
 Kinship care was by far the highest for children living
away from parents (greatest proportion with
grandparents). In Ethiopia, 19% of all households
include at least one child with no parent present.
 The percentage of children in kinship care
increases with age band in all countries but the
total varies considerably between societies. In Tajikistan
only 3% of 15-17 year olds were living without either
parent and of these 11.5% had been orphaned of one or
both parents. By comparison, 29.4% of children aged
12-17 in South Africa were living without either parent
and, of these, only 4.6% were orphaned of both parents.
 The development of policy and the implementation of
foster care systems has been unequal across
different regions and countries.
Key findings ctd.
 Child headed households: South Africa & Guyana had the highest
number. Census data shows that 88% of children in CHH are aged
15 years or over and 44% of CHH in South Africa consist of only one
 The Russian Federation followed by Guyana had the highest rates of
children in detention.
 Children living on the streets: statistics are very weak -only
Brazil had conducted a census. For India and Brazil, estimates of
children actually sleeping on the streets are much lower than those
working on the streets.
 For children with exploitative employers, data is extremely
 Policies to prevent children losing parental care: the strongest
policy frameworks are in Brazil, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia and
Guyana - have recently passed new legislation or strong guidelines
Key findings ctd.
 Social protection to prevent separation through poverty,
the strongest are Brazil (Bolsa Família), Indonesia (Family
Hope), Mexico (Oportunidades), the Russian Federation
(Children of Russia), South Africa (Child Support Grants and
Care Dependency Grants).
 In most countries no clear statement about prioritising
family care over institutions: Guidelines exist for care
planning and standards in seven out of ten countries and
systems for the registration of foster carers were found in all
countries. Guidelines and systems were found for the
registration of residential institutions in all but one country
(Egypt) but in some countries they are not working effectively
and many unregistered institutions continue to function (South
Africa, Mexico).
Section 4:
Key Challenges
Gaps in the data & information
1)Data not collected:
 Throughput statistics on children in formal care (except
Russian Fed & Tajikistan)
 Data on different types of residential care
 Data on children leaving formal care for a family
 Data on prevalence of disability by age & gender &
relationship to separation (except Russian Fed, Brazil &
2) Data not analysed:
 DHS data on the relationship of children living without
parents to the head of household: this is collected but
not included in the analysis in reports
 DHS data could provide analysis on children living with
kin as head of household and basic welfare data
(access to school, last class achieved etc.).
 DHS data could also provide information on child
headed households if these indicators were included at
the time of analysis; the data is collected.
Key methodological challenges
 It was not possible to analyse the effect of universal
social protection systems on the loss of parental care
as those countries with the most effective systems,
Brazil and Mexico, did not have statistics on children
living without both parents. However, this would be
interesting to review through census statistics.
 Kinship care: the exact breakdown of relationship to
the head of household and the total percentage of
households was not available for all countries. This may
be data that could be relatively easy to obtain from DHS
surveys if it was included as an indicator from the
 Data at times was weak and incomplete: entry into
foster care; contact with birth families etc.
Key policy challenges
 Need broad agreement on core indicators for children
without adequate care amongst key actors
 Formal care indicators need to include children under 3
 Collecting high quality data for policy making requires
strong technical capacity and political will by the
State to establish systems for data collection and
collation through government departments or national
statistics offices
 Although various household surveys are already
undertaken and data collected that could provide
information on children in kinship care, in informal nonrelative foster care and in child headed households,
most are not currently analysed against those variables.
 Census systems could also provide that data if those
indicators were included in the design stage of the
Key challenges ctd.
 Technical capacity in qualitative research and
especially the political will to engage children
systematically in research is present.
 To ensure that data is used for policymaking and
strategies, national bodies such as national
councils for children’s rights, that typically
bring different government ministers together with
civil society representatives, need to demand
and analyse the data for policy making.
 National data systems on CWPC (like India &
Brazil) need to be developed
Thank you

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