The Child Protection sector aims at supporting the development of effective and safe child protection systems that prevent and respond to child protection concerns in refugee and host communities and that ensure refugee children have non-discriminatory access to adequate and quality child protection services.
Child Protection Risks In Q3, Uganda hosted more than 860,000 children within the refugee population of which 55,929 face specific protection risks including separation from parents or other relatives (40,890 unaccompanied or separated children) or other risks including violence, abuse, neglect and abandonment, child labour, child marriage or teenage pregnancy that require specialized child protection services. Risks included an increase in separation and neglect as well as abandonment in some cases. The prolonged COVID19 measures also posed particular risks to girls where an increase in premature relationships, child marriage and teenage pregnanAchievements n Q3, a total of 20,898 children are receiving case management services addressing their specific risks and needs (including for 11,889 unaccompanied or separated children). Since the beginning of the year, 8,195 new child protection cases were opened, including 3,795 unaccompanied or separated children) and a range of services were provided through direct interventions by CP actors or through referrals to specialized services. A network of over 1,700 trained community members (CPCs) continued to identify child protection cases, provided basic psychosocial support and provided awareness on child protection concerns to children, caregivers and other community members aiming at addressing some negative cultural practices or norms within the community. 89,116 children between 4-17 years and 45,561 adolescents benefitted from a variety of community-based child protection interventions such as mobile PSS and outdoor activities in small groups and door-to-door awareness activities by community members as well as recreational activities or sports.
Challenges In Q3, the sector continued to face challenges to serve all identified children in need of specialized CP services due to the underfunding of the sector. This results in limited quality of CP programs, shortage of CP staffing and delays in data management aspects. School closures and the hold on recreational activities undertaken in Child Friendly Spaces since March 2020 have further impacted on the reach of the sector members to children and families. Though in Q3, a total of 56 CFS were reported, none of them was opened since March 2020 which negatively impacted on case identification for children at risk and on children’s positive development and growth with the absence of critical ECD, PSS and recreational activities.