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Forced Migration Review. 2007 Jan; (27):20-21.The problem of sexual exploitation and abuse is often exacerbated in situations characterised by poverty, conflict and/or displacement where the UN is actively involved. Poverty and a lack of economic opportunities frequently force women and children to engage in 'survival sex' - the exchange of money, goods or services for sexual favours. In 2002 a joint UNHCR/Save the Children UK report revealed a disturbing pattern of sexual exploitation of refugee children by aid workers and peacekeepers in West Africa. Documenting allegations against 40 agencies and 67 individuals, it reported how humanitarian workers extort sex in exchange for desperately needed aid. Acts of sexual exploitation and abuse committed by UN peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo were brought to the international public's attention in 2005. The UN continues to document cases involving children as young as 11 and anecdotal evidence indicates that hundreds of babies have been born of such acts. For unaccompanied (separated or abandoned), internally displaced and refugee children, vulnerabilities are compounded by increased risks of sexual abuse, prostitution, trafficking, military recruitment and psychosocial distress. A lack of documentation and birth registration in displaced and refugee settings leaves many unable to access healthcare, education and other services. (excerpt)
Perspectives in Health. 2003; 8(2):15-21.Andean ministers of health meeting last April proposed an Andean vaccination week. The idea was soon expanded to include South America and later Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. Eventually 19 countries joined together for the first Vaccination Week in the Americas. The focus was on children who had never been vaccinated: those in hard-to-reach rural areas or marginal urban zones whom earlier campaigns had left behind. (excerpt)
The impact of mother's education on infant and child mortality in selected countries in the ESCWA region. Discussion note.
[Unpublished] 1992. Presented at the International Conference on Population and Development [ICPD], 1994, Expert Group Meeting on Population and Women, Gaborone, Botswana, June 22-26, 1992. 21 p. (ESD/P/ICPD.1994/EG.III/DN.13)A number of researchers have associated child and infant mortality in developing countries with maternal education. The correlation has remained strong even when proximate variables and other socioeconomic variables were controlled. Setting was considered key to refinement of the associations. The illustrations from Jordan and Egypt showed that a particular level of education was needed before fertility declined and urban-rural differences prevailed. Analysis of 1980 Egyptian Fertility Survey data indicated a strong association between child survival and maternal education. Children of women with a secondary education had the lowest infant and child mortality. The impact of maternal education was strongest in Cairo and Alexandria. Findings showed that the child mortality rate for rural women with secondary education was 38% of that for illiterate women; the rate for educated urban women was 61% of that for uneducated women. Analysis of Egyptian Fertility Survey data for 1980 found that child mortality at any age was inversely related to maternal educational level. The infant mortality rate for uneducated mothers was 89% greater than for mothers with 6 or more years of schooling; neonatal mortality was 91% greater, postneonatal mortality was 86% greater, and child mortality was 108% greater. Multivariate analysis indicated that maternal education of at least 6 years decreased postneonatal mortality by 46.2%. Infant mortality was reduced by 26% with at least 6 years of maternal schooling. Child mortality was not affected by maternal education in the multivariate analysis. Data analysis based on data from the Egypt Pregnancy Wastage and Infant Mortality Survey, 1980, revealed that probability of dying in infancy decreased with increased levels of maternal and paternal education. Neonatal mortality was most affected by parental educational status. Multivariate analysis of Jordanian Fertility Survey data for 1976 and 1981 showed that mortality was higher for mothers with less than 6 years of education. Maternal and paternal education had independent effects, but paternal education had the greater impact. Paternal education lasting 9 or more years had an impact on urban child mortality, whereas paternal education must reach at least 12 years in rural areas in order for the effect to be observed. Inconsistent results were found for the impact of spousal differences in education. Rural lack of education had the strongest impact on child survival.
New Haven, Connecticut, Yale University School of Medicine, International Health Dept., 1997 Spring. iv, 154 p.The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), in collaboration with Yale University, researched the role of men in families to facilitate decision making about the inclusion of men in child health and development programs. To date, UNICEF's programs have addressed mothers and children, not parents. Research methodologies included an extensive literature search, a survey of international development agencies, and a review of program experiences in countries such as Jamaica, Zimbabwe, and Viet Nam. Paternal involvement in children's lives has been associated with greater self-esteem, higher educational achievement, more secure gender identification, and greater success in life. Moreover, increased involvement of men in child care leads to greater equality between men and women. Proposed is a family development model that emphasizes all the pathways by which children are influenced by the adult members of their environment, regardless of gender. The factors that have prevented many fathers from participating more fully in their children's lives should be assessed. Responsible parenting skills that will enhance the qualities of the father should be promoted. Other contextual recommendations include hospital-based parenting programs that address the needs of parents, development of local fatherhood projects, fathers' groups and support groups for teen fathers, and institutional support for paternal leaves of absence for child care purposes. It is concluded that men should be acknowledged for their ability and, generally, their desire to become more active participants in the parenting process. They must be held accountable for their children's health and development. UNICEF can play a central role in reconceptualizing the father's role in the family and in current and future child health programs.
Role of men in the lives of children. A study of how improving knowledge about men in families helps strengthen programming for children and women.
New York, New York, UNICEF, 1997 Dec 1. , 37 p.This background paper on the role that men play in the lives of children and women opens by presenting the rationale for the UN Children's Fund's (UNICEF) support of activities focused on men and boys. This is followed by a review of UNICEF's initiatives to involve men in development programs created for children and women and of current literature on studies and projects that have considered 1) the knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and practices of men about issues that affect child health, educational achievement, and general welfare and 2) the male perspective on gender roles, women's employment, violence, and socialization of children. Lessons learned include 1) men play unique and positive roles in the lives of their children and can be persuaded to support efforts to reduce gender inequality, 2) family roles and relationships are changing, 3) socialization is crucial, 4) a life cycle approach is needed to improve family relationships, 5) male-focused strategies can integrate men in problem-focused projects, and 6) men can be motivated to act in the best interests of their children. When developing programs, the first step in creating strategies to involve men in the lives of children is to analyze the situation. The paper also discusses specific strategies and basic program components to involve men in efforts to improve the situation for children and women and describes expected outcomes of such male-targeted outcomes in terms of assessing 1) role changes, 2) the value of male-focused strategies on defined project goals, and 3) other special gains for women.
London, England, International Planned Parenthood Federation [IPPF], 1989. 68 p.The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) surveyed male involvement projects in 7 Family Planning Associations (FPAs) as a preliminary step for program development. Male involvement was defined as organizational activities aimed at men, with the objective of improving family planning practice of either sex. The 1987-1988 survey, which consisted of interviews of FPA staffers in Ghana and Nigeria, Cyprus, Thailand, 4 Caribbean islands, Mexico, Egypt and Nepal, sought to identify FPA activities directed at men; to examine their relative effectiveness, especially against other priorities of the FPAs; and to develop criteria for future male projects. The study concluded that male involvement activities make up a greater part of FPA programs than generally believed: programs included male-targeted community-based contraceptive distribution (CBD), community centers, education in the workplace, contraceptive social marketing (CSM), youth centers, vasectomy clinics, family life education, distribution of educational materials and promotional events. Male groups proved relatively easy to reach for educational work but the effectiveness of the education was uneven and evaluation largely nonexistent. The debate between encouraging CSM programs by independent marketing organizations or continuing more expensive smaller-scale CBD will need to be resolved. The study recommended greater attention to curriculum design; information, education and communication projects; adolescent counselling and contraceptive services; CSM to promote condom use; education and service delivery to the workplace; and in each of these areas, effective and continuous evaluation. An annex provides detailed country reports with the data for the survey.
Emphasis. 1986 Winter; 22-4.The Adolescent Parent Program for Learning Essential Skills (APPLES), designed as a 4-part program to serve pregnant, parenting, and at-risk adolescents in McLean County, Illinois, is considered a model program because of the comprehensive manner in which it addresses the issue of adolescent pregnancy. Designed by Planned Parenthood of Mid Central Illinois (PPMCI) administrative and educational staff, APPLES develops and coordinates services to adolescent parents and provides expertise and strategies for educating at-risk adolescents. APPLES currently has the support and cooperation of 16 youth-serving agencies. 1 essential component of the APPLES program is the Home Visitor Program. Under a subcontract with the McLean County Health Department, each APPLES Home Visitors team is made up of a registered nurse and 1 social worker. The Home Visitors provide aggresive advocacy tailored to the young family's special needs, such as securing adequate housing, transportation, child care, or financial assistance. In addition, APPLES home visitors provide in-home, one-on-one education. Home Visitors assess the child's developmental progress and teach the parents what developmental skills to watch for. Antoher component of APPLES is "Time Out," a weekly peer support group that provides an opportunity for adolescent mothers to share the frustrations and triumphs of parenting. The groups are facilitated by trained volunteers, some of whom were teen mothers. Time Out is a short-term (3-4 months) empowerment/affirmation model that integrates information sharing, consciousness raising, education, and skills development. While mothers take time out for themselves, their children are cared for by trained child development volunteers who use creative play and individual assessment to develop a new activity each week for the mother and child to do at home. The Developmental Day Care component provides adolescent parents with alternatives and partial financing for child care to allow them to continue their education or job training. APPLES staff work with both care providers and young parents to locate day care facilities. ADAM is the support component for adolescent fathers. It works through the PPMCI education staff to promote awareness, education, and prevention for the at-risk adolescent population. ADAM encourages adolescent fathers to be informed of their rights as well as their responsibilities. It provides counseling and support for these young men. Brief educational/support group sessions for Grandparents Too Soon (GTS) were initiated to center on peer help in dealing with feelings, fears, and frustrations.
Women At Work. 1984; (2):1-71.This document describes the current status of maternity protection legislation in developed and developing countries and is based primarily on the findings of the International Labor Organization's (ILO's) global assessment of laws and regulations concerning working women before and after pregnancy. The global survey collected information from 18 Asian and Pacific countries, 36 African nations, 28 North and South American countries, 14 Middle Eastern countries, 19 European market economy countries, and 11 European socialist countries. Articles in 2 ILO conventions provide standards for maternity protection. According to the operative clauses of these conventions working women are entitled to 1) 12 weeks of maternity leave, 2) cash benefits during maternity leaves, 3) nursing breaks during the work day, and 4) protection against dismissal during maternity. Most countries have some qualifying conditions for granting maternity leaves. These conditions either state that a worker must be employed for a certain period of time or contributed to an insurance plan over a defined period of time before a maternity leave will be granted. About 1/2 of the countries in the Asia and Pacific region, the Americas, Africa, and in the Europe market economy group provide maternity leaves of 12 or more weeks. In all European socialist countries, women are entitled to at least 12 weeks maternity leave and in many leaves are considerably longer than 12 months. In the Middle East all but 3 countries provide leaves of less than 12 weeks. Most countries which provide maternity leaves also provide cash benefits, which are usually equivalent to 50%-100% of the worker's wages, and job protection during maternity leaves. Some countries extend job protection beyond the maternity leave. For example, in Czechoslovakia women receive job protection during pregnancy and for 3 years following the birth, if the woman is caring for the child. Nursing breaks are allowed in 5 of the Asian and Pacific countries, 30 of African countries, 18 of the countries in the Americas, 9 of the Middle East countries, 16 of European market economy countries, and in all of the European socialist countries. Several new trends in maternity protection were observed in the survey. A number of countries grant child rearing leaves following maternity leaves. In some countries these leaves can be granted to either the husband or the wife. Some countries have regulations which allow parents to work part time while rearing their children and some permit parents to take time off to care for sick children. In most of the countries, the maternity protection laws and regulations are applied to government workers and in many countries they are also applied to workers in the industrial sector. A list of the countries which have ratified the articles in the ILO convenants concerning maternity benefits is included.