All the key family care practices

What you need to know to raise a healthy family


Key Family Care Practices (KFCPs) are commonly practiced behaviours at household and community level that impact on child survival, growth and development or on the causes of morbidity (illness/disease) and mortality (death) in children.

They are grouped into 4 categories:

1. Child feeding, growth and development

2. Disease/illness prevention

3. Appropriate home care

4. Care seeking and compliance/response to illnesses


What are the 22 Key Family Care Practices?

  1. Antenatal care
    Ensure that every pregnant woman goes for eight antenatal care (ANC) visits from an appropriate health care provider. The mother also needs support from her family and community in seeking care during pregnancy, at the time of delivery, after delivery and during the lactation period. Read more
  2. Malaria prevention
    Ensure that pregnant women and children sleep under insecticide treated nets (ITNs) every night and accept to have their houses sprayed by authorities. Read more
  3. Male involvement in pregnancy and child care
    Ensure that men are involved in the process of offering care to women during pregnancy, childbirth, and after birth, when accessing family planning. Read more
  4. Spacing between pregnancies
    Avoid unplanned pregnancies pregnancy and ensure appropriate interval/spacing of your children by using appropriate contraceptive methods. Read more
  5. Birth registration
    Notify the birth of your child for registration as soon as possible after birth and obtain a birth certificate. Read more
  6. Newborn care
    Keep the newborn warm, umbilical cord and skin clean and dry and recognize low-weight (small), sick babies and those at risk of HIV infection and seek appropriate care. Read more
  7. Immunization
    Take children 5 times before their 1st birthday to complete a full course of immunisation (BCG, DPT,OPV/IPV, PCV, Rota, Pneumonia, and Measles) and adolescent girls to receive the HPV vaccine against cancer of the cervix at the age of 10 years. Read more
  8. Exclusive breastfeeding
    Breastfeed all babies exclusively until the age of six months. Read more
  9. Complementary feeding
    Starting at six months of age, feed babies freshly prepared energy and nutrient rich complementary foods, while continuing to breastfeed the baby up to two years of age and longer. Read more
  10. Micronutrients for children, adolescents and women
    Give children, adolescents and women adequate amounts of micro-nutrients and deworm them. Read more
  11. Hand washing with soap and water
    Always wash your hands with clean water and soap before preparing/serving/eating meals, before feeding children, after using the latrine/ toilet and after disposal of faeces, including children’s. Read more
  12. Play and communication with children
    Promote mental and social development during early childhood (0-8 years) through responsive and stimulating care by talking, playing, showing affection and providing a stimulating learning and safe environment. Read more
  13. Monitoring growth and development of the child
    Monitor physical growth and recognize children’s developmental challenges and disabilities for timely intervention and management. Read more
  14. Child abuse
    Protect and respond to neglect and abuse of children and women including harmful social norms such as Female Genital Mutilation/ Cutting (FGM/C), rape, defilement and child marriage. Read more
  15. Education
    Enroll and keep your children in school until the age of 18. Read more
  16. Adolescent health 
    Ensure wellness and proper development of adolescents by supporting and encouraging them to use adolescent and youth friendly services including getting information about Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)/Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), HIV/AIDS and contraception. Read more
  17. Adolescent growth and development 
    Protect children from teenage pregnancy (including abortions) and other risks by supporting and talking to them to delay sexual relations, avoid smoking, drinking alcohol and taking drugs. Read more
  18. Psychosocial support 
    Recognize when a child, adolescent and pregnant woman need psychosocial support and seek timely medical and appropriate care. Read more
  19. Care and treatment of illnesses at home
    Give children and pregnant women appropriate home treatment during sickness and recovery. Read more
  20. Treatment and follow-up visits to health facilities after an illness
    Follow the health worker’s advice about taking medication, the treatment, follow-up visits and referral. Read more
  21. Infant feeding during sickness
    Continue to feed and offer more fluids, including breast milk, to a child when the child is sick. Read more
  22. Managing child injuries at home
    Take appropriate actions to prevent and manage child injuries and accidents at home and in the community. Read more

Learn more about Key Family Care Practices