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Changing Societal Attitudes on Alternative Care in Cambodia UNICEF-Penn Summer Programme on Advancing Social Norms Jolanda van Westering.

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Presentation on theme: "Changing Societal Attitudes on Alternative Care in Cambodia UNICEF-Penn Summer Programme on Advancing Social Norms Jolanda van Westering."— Presentation transcript:

1 Changing Societal Attitudes on Alternative Care in Cambodia UNICEF-Penn Summer Programme on Advancing Social Norms Jolanda van Westering

2 Introduction Social norm of family and community based care for children Normative and empirical expectations in place – activated in scripts on child care Norm held up by rewards and sanctions Rapid increase in residential care (65% increase of institutionalized children in three years) 55% of children in residential care are not orphans

3 What lies underneath Institutionalization is harmful to children Agenda of orphanages – proselytization and change of moral and social norms Enabling environment set in recent social history of Cambodia

4 Values Matter

5 Values alone? Placement based on value of wanting what is best for one’s child However, children are not happy, parents are not happy, care does not meet the standards and educational opportunities are rarely better What is happening here?

6 Role of Market Norms Erosion of social norm under the influence of market norms and incentives Market norms reconfigure existing social norm and shift expectations around alternative care for children “when a social norm is trumped by a market norm, it will rarely return” (Daniel Ariely)

7 Basic Values under Attack External incentives/rewards change scripts for practices that were previously based on internal incentives (compassion, social approval) New incentives redefine values on well-being of children and ensuring best possible care for children They are shifting expectations of people changing norms that inform behaviour Belief systems and new expectations are brought in line – coherence theory

8 Divorces and Dilemmas Divorce or disharmony between legal, moral and social norms Influence of culture – practice in Cambodia mostly based on moral and social norms rather than legal norms New incentives create new motivators and emotions Social dilemma?

9 What have we done so far?

10 Evaluation of Current Strategies Research to generate evidence for programming – Did not address expectations that underlie attitudes – Focused on selected target groups – not donors – Did not look at social networks that help shape attitudes and behaviors Partnership building around AC Building systems that support social norms change Advocacy and communications strategy

11 Change in Strategies Re-categorizing values to change the scripts that are activated on alternative care Place values in a child rights context Messaging should reinforce a coherent belief system Placing social norms change on alternative care in a social protection context that supports family preservation Addressing underlying social exclusion and vulnerability - equity

12 Change in Strategies cont’d Engaging communities to build local ownership Focus advocacy and communications on social networks – key influencers Diffusion of knowledge towards changing expectations Partnerships to reach donors and church groups that fund and maintain residential care

13 Opportunities and Challenges New CP – IR on social change in child protection provides opportunity National Social Protection Strategy under development Decreasing funding Rallying colleagues and counterparts around social norms change as key strategy – conceptual framework is needed.

14 THANK YOU


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