Advocate Updates December 2022-January 2023

Reporting by Dr Isang Awah


GPI’s Advocacy work has already made a strong start this year, with a number of events, meetings and outputs across our teams. In a January 12 meeting with Ministry of Health Zambia (ZNPHI) and Social Protecting Cooperating Partners which included colleagues from the FCDO, UNICEF, ILO, UNDP, World Bank and the Embassies of Canada, Switzerland, Ireland and Sweden, Prof Lucie Cluver and other members of the Global Reference Group for Children Affected by COVID-19 and Crisis presented on the benefits of hybrid human-digital parenting tools and the cost-savings of using human-digital hybrid models at scale.

In Uganda, the Parenting for Respectability (PfR) team held a successful dissemination event on January 12, 2023, to present the results and recommendations from the Parenting for Respectability Implementation Science Evaluation RCT cluster trial to various stakeholders, including government officials, faith-based leaders, and community leaders. Speakers at the event included Dr Godfrey Siu and Dr Jamie Lachman, GPI Leads, and Hon. Kabahenda Flavia Rwabuhoro, Chairperson of the Gender and Social Services Committee of the Uganda Parliament.

On January 20, 2023, Catholic Relief Services organized a meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe, attended by local implementing partners, partner NGOs, and government officials. The meeting was an opportunity for Dr Nyasha Manjengenda to introduce the PLH system to the audience, and for Prof Cathy Ward to share feedback from the SUPER study. The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education expressed interest in the initiative, and requested a meeting to discuss PLH’s work further.

Dr Jamie Lachman presented during a UNICEF-PLH webinar held on January 24, 2023, to over 160 participants from across the UNICEF network.

On January 26, 2023, researchers from Malaysian Naungan Kasih Positive Parenting and GPI, including Professor Dr Rumaya Juhari, from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), visited the Office of Department of Community Development (KEMAS) at the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development in Putrajaya to introduce an action plan for the implementation of the study “Parenting Within Preschool System: Optimisation and Scale-Up of Human-Digital Playful Parenting Programmes within the Malaysian Preschool System.” As KEMAS is a key agency handling the preschool education system across Malaysia, close collaboration will facilitate the sustainability of the intended parenting programme, and help in building upon their existing initiatives in promoting parental involvement in children’s lives.

In South Africa, Prof. Lucie Cluver and Dr Elona Toska presented on ‘The role of social protection programmes in supporting education outcomes’ at the 2023 BASIC EDUCATION SECTOR LEKGOTLA, which was attended by President Ramaphosa and other high-level policy makers. The meeting took place from January 26-28 and had about 700 participants.

The pilot study of the Naungan Kasih parenting programme in Malaysia was published in BMC as a new paper titled “Before I was like a Tarzan. But now, I take a pause.” Additionally, the Parenting in Crisis resources have been disseminated to families affected by the floods in Pakistan, reaching over 5.7 million people so far. GPI Head of Advocacy, Dr Isang Awah, also shared parenting tips every week of January on her parenting programme on XL 106.9 FM, which reaches an estimated 12 million people or more.

With a busy month behind us, the Advocate team looks forward to an exciting year ahead.