International Year of the Family celebrated at Regional African Experts Meeting in Kenya, May 13-14, 2014.
Helpline Mauritius, the free online counselling service for children and young people was praised and recognised at an Experts‘Meeting in Kenya on 13-14 May. The event was held to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the UN International Year of the Family and the 10th Anniversary of the African Union Plan of Action on the Family in Africa.
Halley Movement’s presentation dealt with: Safer parenting through the provision of an online counselling service in Mauritius.
The meeting was organised by Parenting in Africa Network (PAN) for 50 experts from Africa at Hilton Hotel in Nairobi. Participants included representatives/ committee members of:
- ACERWC – African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child,
- Parent Centre from South Africa,
- Save the Children,
- Director, Ministry of Gender and Family promotion of Rwanda,
- Director, Child welfare dept. Of Zimbabwe,
- SOS Children’s Village of Kenya
- International Rescue Committee
- East African Centre for Human Rights
- Halley Movement from Mauritius.
And also representatives of government and NGOs from the following countries:
The paper presented by Mr. Mahendranath Busgopaul, Secretary General showcased the following:
1. Research Work conducted in Mauritius prior to embarking on the project
2. Rational, Aims and Objectives
3. Recruitment, training and technical set up
4. Data after one year’s of operation
5. Stakeholders contribution to the project, and
6. Strengths, Weaknesses and the Way forward.
The last day saw the drafting of a call by the participants and the call will be sent to:
- The United Nations,
- The African Union and
- African Governments
The Call entitled: ‘Restoring Families as the pillar of development in Africa’ highlights, among others, the following:
- Re-commitment to and urgent review of the African Union Plan of Action on the Family in Africa.
- Promotion of gender equitable parenting roles and responsibilities
- Focus poverty alleviation strategies
- Adoption of policies to ensure work-family balance
- The shift of priorities towards the prevention of family separation, child exploitation and institutionalisation.
- Acknowledgement of families who are at the centre of sustainable development.