Child Protection & Participation
What’s at stake?
“It is important to encourage children to share their opinions on matters affecting them.”
Child protection and participation is gaining increasing momentum in Tanzania after reports have indicated that many Tanzanian children are experiencing abuse, violence, torture and violations of rights at the hands of their parents, guardians, employers, teachers, law enforcement, and community members. The protection of children is a large part of CDF’s mission, and thus must also include the necessary child participation. The involvement of children in the decision making process on matters that directly affect them is a growing realization throughout Tanzania following the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991 and the African Charter on Rights and Welfare of a Child in 2003. Since protection is closely linked with participation, CDF is actively supporting both areas of protection & participation.
What we’re doing
In order to strengthen the existing child protection and participation mechanism, CDF in collaboration with UNICEF are facilitating the establishment of the children councils (Junior Councils of the United Republic of Tanzania) in Mbeya, Iringa and Njombe to enable children to air their views and concerns with regards to children rights violations.
An essential aspect of the model is the involvement of children in various child protection-related activities, through the children’s councils which operate in the above mentioned districts, as well as the intervention areas:
1. Mbeya Rural District
• Utengule Usongwe Ward.
Mbalizi, Iwala, Mhombe, Idugumbi, Utengule Usongwe, Itimba
• Inyala Ward
Iyawaya, Inyala, Darajani, Imezu, Mwakwenje, Shamwengo
• Swaya Ward
Swaya, Nsenga, Wimba, Luteta
2. Mbarali District
• Rujewa Ward.
Ibara, Nyeregete, Ihanga, Rujewa, Isisi, Mabanda, Uhamila
• Imalilasongwe Ward.
Imalilasongwe, Ibumila, Mwanavala, Urunda, Warumba
• Ubaruku Ward.
Mwakaganga, Ubaruku, Utyego, Mpakani, Mkombwe, Mbarali,
1. Iringa Rural District
• Mseke Ward.
Ugwachanya, Wenda, Tanangozi, Sadani, Kaning'ombe, Makota
• Luhota Ward
Kitayawa, Nyabula, Wangama, Ikuvilo, Tagamenda
• Nduli Kisin'ga Ward
Ilambilole, Igingilanyi, Mkungugu, Matembo, Kising'a, Kinywang'anga
2. Mufindi District
• Saohill Ward.
Luganga, Ihefu, Mkanzaule, Mtula, Changarawe
• Rungemba Ward.
Kitelewasi, Itimbo, Rungemba
• Igombavanu Ward.
Lugoda, Lutali, Igombavanu, Mapogoro, Makongomi, Uhambila
1. Njombe Rural District
• Mtwango Ward.
Lunguya, Ilunda, Itunduma, Sovi, Welela
• Matembwe Ward
Iyembela, Lyalalo, Wanginyi, Isoliwaya, Matembwe
• Igongolo Ward
Igongolo, Kivitu, Itipingi, Tagamenda, Ibiki
2. Makete District
• Iwawa Ward.
Iwawa, Ludihani, Ivalalila, Ndulamo, Maleuksi
• Lupalilo Ward.
Lupalilo, Mago, Kisinga , Ilevelo,Ugabwa
• Tandala Ward.
Tandala, Ikonda, Usagatikwa, Ihela
CDF continues to work at a grassroots-level in the above mentioned regions and has had crucial success in this cooperative way of working with the local communities.
Some of these achievements include:
- Positive feedback and commitment by government officials, community leaders, and teachers and parents that support the Child Protection & Participation initiatives
- Support from UNICEF, specifically in regards to the Child Protection & Participation programs
- Establishment of Police Gender Desk in the Mara Region, ensuring that children, especially girls and young women, have an avenue to report any case of violence, mistreatment or abuse.
- Along with the police station desk there has also been the establishment of the Child Protection Team, which ensures that professionals in the region have a presence and can directly work with an support the children effected by violence or abuse
- Currently there are over 3800 children at the village level and 540 children at the ward level who are members of Children’s Councils in the Mara Region
“The extent of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation on children is shocking, and most children are forced to drop out of school and work on very low wages to help parents get income to feed the family and sometimes fend for their needs”