NEWS– The Kanungu District Secretary for Social Services Kenneth Tumuhamye has underscored the need for District and sub counties to plan and budget for children issues in order to influence the implementation of the national child policy.
Tumuhamye said this while officiating at the launch of National Child Policy 2020 and its implementation plan at All Saints Hall in Kanungu Town Council in Kanungu district which took place on Wednesday October 13th 2021.
The launch was organised by the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development in collaboration with the National Inter Ministerial Committee and other development partners who are working together to ensure that the policy is implemented. The other players in the policy include the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries as well as USAID.
According to government, the National child policy is in fulfillment of the government of Uganda constitutional mandate on the welfare of children where its estimated that over 96% of Ugandan children experience some level of vulnerability.
It’s also in line with the Ministry of Gender mission to mobilise and empower citizens to harness their potential while protecting the rights of vulnerable groups.
The Ministry has therefore set specific policy objectives which include preventing child mortality and promote children health including refugee children, promote nurturing, care, stimulation and holistic development and learning for all children.
This is also aimed at preventing, responding to and Protecting children from all forms of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation.
The national child policy also is aiming at promoting the right of all children to be heard and express their opinion in all matters that affect their lives according to their developing capacities and also strengthen systems for planning, programming and delivery of quality child care and protection.
According to the National Children Authority Executive Director Martin Kiiza Kasagara the National Child Policy was developed through a highly participatory process that involved a wide range of stakeholders with vast knowledge on children at national, regional, district and community levels where even children were consulted.
Kiiza Kasagara said that the policy recognizes the social workers as critical groups to work with other structures in responding and reporting child issues and urged all stakeholders to commit themselves to protection of children.
He said that the national child policy is the first of it’s kind in Africa and if well implemented especially at lower local level of governance, it will go a long way in improving the welfare of children in the country.
The Senior Agricultural Extension Coordinator in the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries Joseph Okee said that children start benefiting from their community at the conception of pregnancy and there is great need to plan for their wellbeing so that they grow up well nurtured and become strong and responsible citizens.
The case worker of SAUTI 116 Programe in the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development Ms Batenga Faridah whose activities deals with children affairs said that she the national child policy once recognized the actors will be able to realize the need for its implementation at District and Sub-county levels and will be linked to the National Development Plan III.
The USAID Integrated Child and Youth Development Activity (ICYD) OVC Manager Kamunvi Eric who represented the development partners said that they are committed to ensure that child issues are given priority so that they can realize their potential.