Children’s Act: Promoting implementation
After more than a decade in the making, the whole Children’s Act 38 of 2005 (as amended by Act 41 of 2007) came into operation on 1 April 2010, together with its regulations. This project aims to promote the implementation of the Children’s Act. The main implementation challenges are a lack of adequate human resources, a history of a low budget allocation and expenditure base for social services aimed at children, and the need for knowledge and understanding among practitioners and the public on how to interpret and apply the new law.
To contribute to the growth and development of the necessary human resources to implement the Act, the project draws on a similar model used by the completed Children's Bill Project to promote participation and input on a new law that will help regulate and recognise a range of professionals and practitioners who are responsible for the implementation of the new Act. For this purpose, a Social Service Practitioners Advocacy Network was established to promote the participation of social service practitioners in the finalisation of the Social Service Professions and Occupations Bill.
To promote budget growth, the Institute has been monitoring the budget allocations and expenditure trends of the nine provincial departments of social development since 2007. In addition, research on the donor funding flows for Children’s Act services was done in 2010 in partnership with Community Agency for Social Enquiry (CASE). The research findings are communicated to the government, donors and civil society to promote growth of the available funding, and to fund all geographical areas and service categories more comprehensively.
To respond to the need for knowledge and an understanding of the Act, the Institute publishes guides and popular articles, and conducts training sessions with relevant professionals to help them understand the implications of the new Act on their roles and responsibilities.
Work on this project to date was made possible by the DG Murray Trust, Atlantic Philanthropies, the ELMA Foundation and UNICEF South Africa.
For more information and resources on the Children's Act, visit the Law reform page.
Children's Act guide for early childhood development practitioners
Berry L, Jamieson L & James M
Children's Institute, University of Cape Town, & Little Elephant Training Centre for Early Education (LETCEE)
Legal guide to age thresholds for children and young people
April 2011 (Edition 5)
Mahery P & Proudlock P 2011
Children’s Act guide for child and youth care workers
January 2011 (Edition 1) [File size: 2.84 MB]
Mahery P, Jamieson L & Scott K 2011
Children’s Institute, University of Cape Town, & National Association of Child and Youth Care Workers
A guide to the Children's Act for health professionals
June 2010 (Edition 4)
Mahery P, Proudlock P & Jamieson L 2010
Special child protective measures in the Children’s Act
Kassan D & Mahery P 2009
In: Boezaart T (ed) (2009) Child Law in South Africa. Claremont: Juta.
Guide to the Children’s Act No. 38 of 2005 (As amended by the Children’s Amendment Act 41 of 2007)
Proudlock P & Jamieson L 2008
Issued on 26 May 2008 during Child Protection Week and the Department of Social Development conference Getting South Africa Ready to Implement the Children’s Act.
Choices which can affect the cost of the Children’s Bill
Budlender D, Proudlock P & Jamieson L 2007
Centre for Actuarial Research & Children’s Institute, University of Cape Town, July 2007