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System-wide issues in child care reform Clare OBrien, Consultant For UNICEF 2 nd Child Protection Forum Bishkek, 12 May 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "System-wide issues in child care reform Clare OBrien, Consultant For UNICEF 2 nd Child Protection Forum Bishkek, 12 May 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 System-wide issues in child care reform Clare OBrien, Consultant For UNICEF 2 nd Child Protection Forum Bishkek, 12 May 2009

2 Summary 1.Scope of presentation 2.Elements of a reform 3.Application to child care reform in region A. Identifying the problem B. Developing policy C. Implementation D. Monitoring the reform 4. Conclusions

3 1. Scope of presentation Framework for understanding policy reform Review of key issues in whole policy environment Achievements and challenges, with examples from Central Asian experience Entry points for acceleration of the reform


5 2 (2). Elements of a reform Who? How? ACTORS government, non-government RESOURCES financial human / material resources PROCESSES communication, participation + +

6 So.... How has this worked for child care reform in Central Asia?

7 3A. I DENTIFYING THE PROBLEM : What is child care reform trying to achieve? Way of defining the problem determines the solution Various responses to UN Convention on the Rights of the Child o Deinstitutionalisation o Development of alternative services But which children? o All children at risk, or those known to social welfare system? o Children in state-run facilities, or others? o What happens beyond age 18? Resource constraints require prioritisation

8 3A. I DENTIFYING THE PROBLEM : Results and challenges Results o All countries recognise issues relating to CRC o Some focus on deinstitutionalisation, others have emphasis on e.g. children with disabilities o Government and non-government actors generally agree on fundamental problem to be addressed Challenges o Public opinion (despite efforts) o Identifying children missing from system

9 3B. D EVELOPING POLICY : Strategies, laws, regulations, budget Strategies provide direction... Laws and regulations provide teeth... o Standards, inspection... but budget shows where the priorities really are o Distribution between levels of government o Allocation to different budget lines o Visibility in MTEF

10 3B. D EVELOPING POLICY : Successes Recognition of social protection is everywhere Some comprehensive strategies for children o Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Uzbekistan Legislation and regulations developed on huge range of issues Some positive results in the budget o Inclusion of alternative services in state budget (e.g. foster care in Kazakhstan) o Inclusion in conditionality matrix of EU budget support programme (e.g. Kyrgyz Republic)

11 3B. D EVELOPING POLICY : Challenges Understanding why draft laws havent been passed o Willingness, capacity, financial constraints Aligning the budget with the policy o Budgets on child care not known to have increased as % of total budget o Need to transfer funds to implementing agency o Beware of small budget share for alternative services

12 Requires... Public administrative reform o Who is in charge of residential care / alternative services? Public financial management o Budget execution, regular disbursement Human resources Partnerships Enforcement 3C. I MPLEMENTATION : Turning the policies into reality

13 All countries have a history of some family-based care e.g. guardianship, adoption All have piloted alternative services, especially family support Some coordination of child care activities o e.g. Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan Active participation of non-state partners Gradual expansion of social work profession o includes university courses in many countries 3C. I MPLEMENTATION : Achievements

14 Continued demand for residential care Still many government agencies Decentralisation of functions and funding remains a challenge Still high number of staff in residential institutions Enforcement of laws and regulations 3C. I MPLEMENTATION : Challenges

15 How do we measure the success of child welfare reform? o Not just numbers in institutions o Monitoring is different to inspection What data exist? o And do they reflect what we want to know about? How will the data be collected? o Regular reporting, inspection function, financial audit? How will the data be used? o Monitoring is not just for sanctions 3D. M ONITOR AND REVIEW : Indicators, data collection, use

16 Monitoring is beginning to be developed But emphasis often on outputs o not impact on child o not much on resource flows Very little data o little known outside state-run facilities o few strong incentives for accurate reporting Reporting is burden on staff Programme budgeting not firmly established 3D. M ONITOR AND REVIEW : Results and challenges

17 4. Conclusions Policymakers face challenges at all stages of the policy cycle Each country has its own issues in child care reform Need to ensure consistency of design, implementation and monitoring with the problem that is being addressed

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