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Current Projects

Overview

Child Abuse Tracking Study

This study traces reported child abuse and neglect cases through the child protection system to identify and describe the challenges that are preventing children from receiving quality and timely protection services.

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The South African Child Death Review Project – effective intersectoral collaboration

Child Death Reviews (CDRs) use an intersectoral approach to understand and prevent child deaths. This project has been implemented by the Children’s Institute in collaboration with the Division of Forensic Medicine, University of Cape Town for the Western Cape and the Forensic Pathology Services, KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health for Kwa-zulu Natal.

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Child Death Reviews Study

This project involves the piloting of child death review teams as a mechanism to improve the identification and criminal justice outcomes of fatal child abuse. In addition, the project will monitor the effectiveness of the teams through the use of standardised indicators to improve case identification. The overall goal is to prevent child deaths through the identification of gaps and barriers in the child protection system.

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Child rights and child law for health and allied professionals

This accredited five-day course provides cutting-edge education in child rights and child law for health and allied professionals – including up-to-date training on consent to medical treatment and the reporting of child abuse and neglect as outlined in the Children’s Act. It examines the relationship between children’s rights and child health, and aims to equip health and allied professionals with the necessary knowledge and skills to realise children’s rights in their daily practice.

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Child-centred analysis of government’s budgets

South Africa’s comprehensive range of laws, policies and programmes to realise children’s rights need to be adequately resourced in order to reach all children in need. This project has been conducting annual child-centred analyses of government’s budgets to assess whether the state is allocating and spending adequate budgets to realise children’s rights. Ultimately, the project wants to contribute to ensuring that adequate resources are allocated for the effective delivery of services to children, and that these resources are spent in children's best interests.

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Children Count – Abantwana Babalulekile

Children Count – Abantwana Babalulekile is an ongoing project that provides time-series statistics on the situation of children in South Africa to multiple audiences. The statistics and related commentary, as well as information on the data sources, are available at childrencount.ci.org.za

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Children’s Act: Promoting implementation

This project aims to promote the implementation of the Children’s Act (Act 38 of 2005, as amended by Act 41 of 2007) that came into operation on 1 April 2010. The main implementation challenges are a lack of adequate human resources, a history of a low budget allocation and expenditure base for social services for children, and the need for knowledge and understanding among practitioners and the public on how to interpret and apply the new law.

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Social assistance for orphaned children living with relatives

Over the past 10 years a diverse set of problems have been documented about the widespread use of the foster care system to provide financial assistance to the country’s increasing number of orphans, the majority of whom are living with relatives. Children’s Institute socio-legal research and consultations with government and practitioners are aimed at finding clarity and proposing solutions that are in the best interests of all affected children.

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Social security – towards comprehensive protection for children

The Children’s Institute since 2001 has contributed to research and advocacy on new policies on social security for children. Research to date has focused on elements of the social security system particularly pertaining to children living in poverty. The aim is to advocate for the improvement of the social security system in South Africa to ensure that the right to social assistance is realised for all children.

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South African Child Gauge®

The South African Child Gauge® is a flagship publication that provides an annual snapshot of the status of children in South Africa. By drawing on the latest research evidence, the Child Gauge presents a set of plain language essays on a different theme each year, alongside an update on legislative developments that affect children’s rights. It also includes datasets that track various socio-economic indicators related to children, and is accompanied by a pull-out poster on the theme, a policy brief, and a child-friendly summary.

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Southern Africa regional network on child indicators

The long-term aim of this initiative is to increase capacity for policy-relevant research on child poverty and protection in southern Africa.

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