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How are the children? Community-based approach to monitoring and evaluation of child well-being in Sub-Saharan Africa

Florence Nyangara, Futures Group
Karen O’Donnell, Duke University
Robert Murphy, Duke University
Beverly Nyberg

“How are the children?” is a common greeting with deep cultural meaning throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Child well-being among African communities is of highest priority and is monitored and evaluated continuously. This study focuses on developing a culturally sensitive and practical measurement to assess child well-being through a community-based approach. Five communities supporting orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) in Kenya and Tanzania are involved in the study. Community members helped conceptualize and develop the tool through interviews and focus groups. The community identified ten domains including food security, shelter, care, abuse, emotional, behavior, wellness, access to health services, education/activity, and performance as essential components of monitoring child wellbeing. Challenges and lessons learned on the integration of community workers in this research to produce a locally acceptable tool will be discussed. This bottom-up approach also provided an opportunity for community buy-in, useful feedback, improved communication, and commitment to applying the tool appropriately.

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Presented in Poster Session 4