Children’s Rights and Positive Parenting in Zambia

Positive parenting in sub-Saharan Africa is undeveloped and fundamentally inadequate. Few countries have policies that focus specifically on positive parenting or a framework for parenting into which this is integrated and defined as a priority. Given the significance of enabling environmental factors for good parenting, the ‘mainstreaming’ of support for parents is important for enabling positive parenting. It is against this background that Sonke embarked on the process of developing this policy brief, in partnership with Save the Children Zambia and their implementing partners within the parenting space.

SAVE THE CHILDREN (SC) Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO), in partnership with Sonke Gender Justice (Sonke), are implementing the MenCare Campaign in six (6) target countries, namely, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania and Zanzibar. This is done through the SC Country offices to promote men’s involvement as equitable, responsive and nurturing and non-violent fathers and caregivers. The programme intervention offers individual men the opportunity to prepare themselves for active parenthood and equal relationships with their partners by: promoting women’s rights and children’s development and rights; improving reproductive, maternal and paternal health; preventing and ending intimate partner violence and transforming harmful gender norms.

This policy brief can be used by Governments and Civil Society structures, policy and decision makers to implement policies and programmes which create opportunities for the equal and fair participation of men in caregiving, child development and domestic work, while facilitating opportunities for women to work. The vision is to engage with the civil society and activists in Zambia to participate in their national policy processes and further influence their government with regards to implementing existing policies and drafting of new ones related to improving children’s rights and promoting positive and gender equitable parenting.