GPI Lead Dr Jamie Lachman Speaks at the Gulf Countries’ Policy Dialogues on Child Wellbeing

GPI Lead Dr Jamie Lachman Speaks at the Gulf Countries’ Policy Dialogues on Child Wellbeing

Dr Jamie Lachman Presents at  Gulf Countries’ Policy Dialogues on Child Wellbeing

Abu Dhabi, 7 September 2023 - Global Parenting Initiative lead, Dr Jamie Lachman of the Department of Social Policy and Intervention, University of Oxford, recently spoke at the “Gulf Countries’ Policy Dialogues on Child Wellbeing”, held in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Dr Lachman’s talk, entitled “Child Wellbeing, Care and Protection, and the Central Role of Fathers: Making Parenting Support Inclusive and Universal ”, explored the importance of providing support to parents through parenting programmes, as well as the importance of engaging fathers in these interventions.

The Dialogues, which were coordinated by the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood in partnership with the General Secretariat of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority, and UNICEF, had the primary objective of highlighting the significance of child protection systems and rallying efforts to enhance social workforces and coordination mechanisms. During the Dialogues, participants made a commitment to prioritise the development of child protection models and to actively engage in preparations for their implementation. Present were thirty policymakers from the six GCC member countries.

Following the presentation from Dr Lachman was a dynamic Q&A session. Participants in the discussion were interested in evaluating programme delivery by facilitators, determining the optimal timing for providing programmes to parents (before marriage, during pregnancy, or at multiple stages), and assessing the long-term impact of programmes on children's parenting skills when they become adults. They also inquired about the effectiveness of programmes for parents from various socio-economic backgrounds, with children of different ages, and in low-income countries, noting that these programs tend to be effective across these factors. Additionally, there was a debate regarding the advantages and disadvantages of making parenting programmes universally mandatory or voluntary for parents.

After the Dialogues, the Community of Practice, established earlier this year, intends to persist in uniting important stakeholders in the Gulf Region. Its goal is to facilitate ongoing dialogues and conversations, fostering a platform for the exchange of knowledge and best practices, with a specific focus on matters pertaining to child protection.

Read more here