UNICEF and the Ministry of Internal Affairs launch new tool to address children’s needs

20 July 2023

Tonga 11 July 2023 – Identifying and addressing the needs of children has become easier for policymakers in Tonga. This comes after the launch of UNICEF Pacific and the Ministry of Internal Affairs new initiative called the National Multi-Dimensional Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (N-MODA).

N-MODA is a flexible methodology data collection tool that will not only strengthen data evidence on critical child issues such as poverty, but also provide critical pieces of evidence to build a resilient shock responsive child sensitive social protection system in the country.

The launch was kicked off with an inception workshop which saw government and non-government partners gather for a day to understand and define the data collection dimensions such as the indicators and thresholds of child deprivation in the local context.

“The launch of N-MODA is timely and in line with our National Development Strategic Frameworks priorities for children in Tonga. This initiative also complements the Humanitarian Cash Transfer to help the most vulnerable families,” said Hon. Minister for Internal Affairs Lord Vaea. “We are grateful to UNICEF for this partnership at such an important time.”

The N-MODA initiative provides a critical platform to government agencies, civil society organizations and development partners to discuss and identify various factors contributing to child deprivation.

N-MODA will enable policy makers to determine and address the needs of Tongan children in areas such as food security, nutrition, health, education, child protection, water and sanitation.

“One of our goals is to work with our partners to provide tailored support to our beneficiaries, and N-MODA assists us in achieving that,” said Deputy Representative Roshni Basu. “N-MODA is going to change the way we work in Tonga as it will give us a detailed look into the various aspects affecting Tongan children.”

N-MODA aims to capture national values and objectives concerning child development by exploring the profile of children in need.

The finding will provide critical evidence to inform equity-based public policy responses to child deprivation; and indicate deprivation coincidences that need further theoretical and empirical elaboration.

The N-MODA initiative is a collaboration between UNICEF and the Ministry of Internal Affairs.


Notes to Editors

MODA is a flexible methodology and adapts to different input factors. The National Multi-Dimensional Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (N-MODA) is a specific application of the MODA methodology, which aims at fitting the national context and using recent and high-quality national survey data such as Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS), with customized choices of age groups, dimensions and thresholds.

About the Ministry of Internal Affairs:

The Ministry of Internal Affairs consolidates policies relevant to social and community development and delivers functions pertinent to creating the enabling environment of poverty alleviation and inclusivity. Ministry complements the efforts of other Line Ministries in promoting strong inclusive communities through social service demands and in ensuring equitable distribution of development benefits. For more information about Ministry of Internal Affairs and its work visit, https://mia.gov.to/

For more information, please contact:

Lu'isa Manuofetoa, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Tel: +676 7401000, lmanuofetoa2015@gmail.com

Avneel Chand UNICEF Pacific, Tel: +679 7220806, aachand@unicef.org

Media contacts

Avneel Chand
Communication Officer
UNICEF Pacific
Tel: 7220806


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit https://www.unicef.org/pacificislands/

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