Public Policy and Promotion of Child Rights
The challenge for fulfilling child rights and the protection of children is to ensure that macro-economic frameworks, national development strategies and evidence based policy development reflect priority issues for children. It is important to put them at the centre of socio-economic policy agendas and decision-making, including Poverty Reduction Strategies and Sector Wide Approaches.
The current country programme therefore aims to achieve the establishment of national and regional information and advocacy systems that provide quality social data and monitor evidence-based public policies adequate to achieve the Millennium Development Goals as well as the creation by media of public awareness of children’s and women’s rights through accurate and balanced coverage of children’s and women’s issues.
With the Bureau of Statistics, UNICEF is working towards the establishment of DevInfo (www.devinfo.org) , as a national platform for data management. With St. Lucia and Barbados, Guyana is one of the three pilot countries selected by CARICOM. The results of the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey Round 3 (www.childinfo.org), a survey on social indicators, of which more than 20 indicators were used to measure the Millennium Development Goals, will form an important contribution to this national data base. UNICEF is also supporting the Ministry of Labour, Human Services and Social Security to expand the Child Protection Monitoring Information System (CPMIS) to all the Regions in Guyana. And as a contribution to the promotion of reporting respectful of human rights, a national Children’s and Women’s Rights Media Monitoring System (CWRMMS) is being set up.
Together with the National Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Office of the President, UNICEF further supports regional child rights and Poverty Reduction Strategy monitoring mechanisms such as the Regional Committees on the Rights of the Child, and the Regional Poverty Reduction Strategy Committees. One of the principal activities here is to develop their capacity to monitor, analyse and influence the budget preparation and social expenditure at the Regional level; therefore stimulating popular participation in the budget preparation and execution. In this regard, UNICEF also collaborates with the University of Guyana to include child rights as an integral part of public policy courses.
At the national level, UNICEF is working with the Ministry of Finance on analysis of the budget to determine if the increased political commitment to the well-being of children and the increased allocation to the social sectors are indeed translated into positive changes in the lives of children and their families.
For details on the priority areas for this year read press release on: Signing of the 2007 Annual Work Plans