The Inter-University Programme aims at strengthening inter-university collaboration and training in child-focused research skills. Under this program, AfriChild takes on mid-level child-focused researchers from seven universities in Uganda and equips them with skills in child-focused research methods, grant acquisition, and publication. The seven Universities the Centre works with are Makerere University, Kyambogo University, Nsamizi Training Institute, Uganda Martyrs University, Uganda Christian University, Gulu University, and Muni University.
The GST-S study is a pilot trial implemented by AfriChild and Raising voices with support from The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The aim of this pilot study is to learn more about how the Good Schools Toolkit works in secondary schools following the successful implementation of GST-P in 42 primary schools in Uganda. The study will be implemented 8 secondary schools in Kampala and Wakiso districts.
The AfriChild Centre is running a research fellowship with Together For Girls that focuses on strengthening individual and institutional in-country research capacity to generate and utilize evidence for policy and programming for prevention and improved response to violence against children.The focus of the research examines sexual violence and its effects on education, mental health, and HIV infection among females in Uganda using findings from the Uganda Violence Against Children Survey (VACs) data.
Data collection and analysis for this study were completed in January 2021 attesting to the Centre’s capacity to deliver on research undertakings. Project close out activities were conducted. Report writing and manuscript development is ongoing.
To map the available evidence on the contribution of fathers to care work in the country. The scoping review was conducted to map the evidence on the role of fathers in child care in Uganda. The goal of this research was to inform policymakers, researchers and practitioners regarding the extent and implications of men’s involvement in direct childcare work, and to highlight opportunities for improving research knowledge with policy and programme recommendations in terms of fatherhood as an entry point for improved social outcomes in Uganda. This study was launched in a successful virtual event in June 2021. The report is the first of its kind in the country placing Uganda with South Africa and Tanzania as the only other African countries that have so far released this report. AfriChild led all components of producing the report with wide stakeholder participation.
The AfriChild Centre is conducting an impact evaluation of the “empowering communities to protect children” intervention implemented by ChildFund for a period of three years in two sub counties, Matidi and Lagoro, in Kitgum District, Northern Uganda. The evaluation is funded by the Evaluation Fund. The project goal was to promote violence-free communities by addressing protection needs of 3,000 children in two sub counties in Kitgum. The project utilised a community-based approach to preventing violence against children, promoting increased investment in the child protection sector and access to improved child protection services. AfriChild completed qualitative and quantitative data collection and held engagements with policy makers to support integration of research findings into government programmes targeting children. The Centre also held community feedback sessions with community members to share the findings of study as part of the dissemination strategy. To support research uptake in government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), a reference group comprising of officials from Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Ministry of Education and Sports, Ministry of Health, Uganda Police Forces, Uganda Bureau of Statistics, Child Fund International, National Children’s Authority and the National Child Protection Working Group was constituted and held meetings to participate in the research process.
AfriChild successfully attracted additional funding to conduct a baseline study on taking the Good Schools Toolkit to scale. Although this study was severely impacted by the closure of schools as a result of the second wave of the Covid-19, it demonstrates the increased capacity of the Centre to attract, manage and implement multiple research projects concurrently.
The AfriChild Centre is partnering with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine to explore how global narratives of child protection and perspectives of honour affect child wellbeing. This is part of a multi-country study taking place in Uganda, Sri Lanka, New Zealand and South Africa. AfriChild is leading the Uganda study. This study advances current scholarship on two topics related to honour: 1) honour as a factor in sustaining violence against children, and 2) honour as a factor contributing to child well-being through children’s social relationships (with family, peers, and community). This research agenda is informed by both a systematic scoping review of the literature on honour-related violence and children, and by a meeting held in Washington DC in November 2019. In this meeting a group of academics, researchers, funders and activists gathered to reflect on the links between honour and child protection, and how investigating these links can improve child protection programs and policies. In this study, AfriChild is using an innovative youth participatory approach to enhance children’s meaningful participation in research. The youth are actively involved as peer researchers and the Centre uses other participatory methods to enhance the research experience.
The study tests gender measures in violence against children surveys. AfriChild is conducting this study in partnership with Together for Girls and the University of California San Diego (UCSD). AfriChild was identified as a partner for this study owing to the central role the Centre played in the Uganda VACS process and the capacity to implement violence against children related research.
AfriChild in partnership with the Care and Protection of Children (CPC) Learning Network are testing out a tool that aims at enhancing child participation in research and programming particularly in humanitarian settings, The tool was developed to respond to the emerging need to engage children as partners in Child Protection during Covid-19. AfriChild is piloting this tool with children in research in Uganda to generate more evidence on its efficacy in promoting meaningful child participation.