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Positive parenting: A family approach to protect children from violence and neglect. AVSI experience in the Great Lakes Region Rita Larok National Conference.

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Presentation on theme: "Positive parenting: A family approach to protect children from violence and neglect. AVSI experience in the Great Lakes Region Rita Larok National Conference."— Presentation transcript:

1 Positive parenting: A family approach to protect children from violence and neglect. AVSI experience in the Great Lakes Region Rita Larok National Conference on Violence Against Children – Kigali – 3-4 October 2011

2 Overview of the presentation Key definitions About AVSI What we need to know Case examples – illustrating positive parenting Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Justification for the family approach – positive parenting: OVC project research: The Future: SCORE

3 Key definitions Positive parenting: – A positive parenting approach is child-centric, placing at the heart of every interaction the best interests of the child – Considers the child as a valuable human being as any other. With desires, needs, capabilities and even fears – Central to this approach is the relationship between the child and the parent/care giver – The parent is a mentor and a guide who uses positive discipline Positive discipline: – providing positive reinforcement for good choices as well as consequences for poor choices. A positive discipline approach rejects the use of violence as a tool for teaching. Its about making a long-term investment in a childs development, rather than grasping for immediate compliance.

4 Key definitions Family based approach to care for vulnerable children: – An approach that considers the family as the best and most critical point of care and protection for a child – Emphasis on stimulating the families capacity to care for and protect their own children – Considering the family as the first line for care and protection and as a resource

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6 Practical positive parenting the human being defines him/herself in relationship to another. The family is a human shelter woven by relationships and belonging

7 What we need to know: Parents are agents of socialization Children emulate their parents and thus the need to have positive parents who can be role models / a source of education for their children Children can be affected physically and psychologically when they live in violent homes and thus the need for stable families Parents give what they are. Therefore the need to ENGAGE families NOT REPLACE them

8 What we need to know: Children are unique and will behave differently. Getting to know your own child, and knowing what makes them angry or agitated can help you prevent angry or upsetting situations before they happen. Your child will behave in a challenging way because of many reasons: they want their parent to listen to them; they want their parent to spend time with them They have been through traumatic events They observe negative behavior from their peers and parents They are just adjusting and growing They are protecting themselves against further abuse

9 What we need to know: Talking and listening to your child helps them to understand whats going on: – Language: Try to use positive words. Tell your child what you want them to do, not what you dont want them to do. – Change your tone – Listening: Encourage your child to talk to you – sit beside him/her – theyll find it easier to talk and listen to you if youre not standing over them. – Explaining: If you have to say no, give your child a good reason and offer an alternative – Involve your child: Where possible talk with them about the rules and what you expect from them. Communication through play Understanding Changes as children grow Rewarding and Noticing good Behavior – Start from the positive -Praise: As a general rule, try to give five times more praise than criticism. Build Self Confidence Avoid comparisons looking after yourself Parenting Tips

10 Case 1: Joe Joe is a difficult 17 yr old. He's a total orphan, who lives with a grandma in a rural village. He lives there with 13 other children, some younger and others older. He doesnt want to do anything. He wakes up in the morning, has breakfast and takes off. He returns in the evening, exhausted and even drunk. The Local councilor as well as other village members have warned grand- ma that the next time they see Joe, they will kill him because he steals their property and sells it off. He's also being accused of having made a 13 yr old girl pregnant What do we do with Joe? – Take him to prison? – Beat him up? Knowing the cause for Joes behavior is critical in helping him

11 Case 1: Taking medicine Your 4 yr old child refuses to take an antibiotic syrup (7.5ml 3 times a day) prescribed by the pediatrician for her very stubborn cough. When you give her the medicine, she answers that she has taken it for too long now and it smells very bad. She refuses to take it. You are pressed with time, you need to go to work. What do you do? – You are torn between understanding her point and as an adult, you know that the medicine is important – Hold her nose and force the medicine down her throat? – Give her a thorough beating? – Give her some explanation on the importance of this medicine? – Mix up the medicine with some juice/honey? – Take some of it yourself? To prove that its not that bad? – Keep changing the places where the medicine is taken? – Involve the child in pouring the medicine in to the lid?

12 Case 2: Jebulonis family Jebuloni – Father to Joy and Simon Violent and alcoholic husband and father He wants Joy his daughter to be married at 12 years of age His son, Simon, Joys younger brother agrees with his father that Joy is wasting money at school and teams up with his father to beat up his mum and sister each time Joy passes primary school very well and encounters AVSI that pays up part of her school fees. Her mum pays the rest and is very happy! She gets a job at the air port and earns 2500 USD per month) She comes home one day and surprises the father – she wants to build the biggest house in the village for her family. Her father and brother are embarrassed. Her brother is now a school drop out. She offers to pay his fees and he accepts to go to school. Her father – now an old man, apologizes for his past behaviour

13 Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Early childhood development centres promoted and run by parents Production of school uniforms and starting of School feeding programs

14 Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Parental contribution to school fees Creation of Parents committees to negotiate with schools Promotion of parents following up childrens achievements Parents as trainers (peer educators Parental contribution to school fees Creation of Parents committees to negotiate with schools Promotion of parents following up childrens achievements Parents as trainers (peer educators

15 Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Parents making bricks to be used for construction of houses for OVC households that do not have appropriate shelter

16 Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Supporting economic strengthening activities for families

17 Using the family approach: Other practical examples of positive parenting Encouraging parents to play with their children Sensitizations Adult literacy Encouraging parents to play with their children Sensitizations Adult literacy urubohero Using tradition and culture to discuss pertinent care aspects for VC in the context of SGBV and child protection urubohero Using tradition and culture to discuss pertinent care aspects for VC in the context of SGBV and child protection

18 Justification for the family approach – positive parenting: OVC project research: Longitudinal Panel Study (3 Phased) 3 country Research (Uganda, Kenya &Rwanda) 1167 children and their family members interviewed initially and at the end a 4% drop out rate due to several reasons (total of 1053) interviewed in final survey Multivariate analysis of different components

19 Characterization of Variables Research evidence: E.g. Characterization of Variables {Child Personality-aggressive (2,7%)} The category aggressive is associated more often with guardians who have health problems affecting their working ability (43%), absence of income (21%) and poor house conditions (no toilet and house made with mud and mabati roof (39%). In many of these cases, children are fatherless (71%) and are male (79%). 53% live in urban slums and more frequently from Uganda (68%).

20 Justification for the family approach – positive parenting: Research conclusions Clear correlation between a childs wellbeing and the family situation (guardians health situation, presence/involvement of the guardian, literacy levels of the guardian, household nutrition etc). The improvement of the relationship among peers and between adults and children is critical, as it positively affects other areas of the wellbeing of the child like his/her education (better performance at school), and his/her general health. The findings confirm that indeed a family centered approach is more effective in promoting a childs well-being as opposed to simply child centered interventions. A comprehensive summary of the evaluation done on children is in: http://www.avsi.org/documenti/Tascabile11_inglow_avsi.pdf. http://www.avsi.org/documenti/Tascabile11_inglow_avsi.pdf The whole evaluation is in: http://www.avsi.org/documenti/report_children_AVSI.pdf http://www.avsi.org/documenti/report_children_AVSI.pdf

21 The Future Programs centered on families Emphasis on working with/engagement of parents Considering families as a resource for the protection and care of children Boosting the social economic capacity of families to enable them carry out the provision role Designing and implementing household development plans Building capacity of family members through training Rejuvenating all necessary social networks that can help the family and children ….Example of SCORE

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