Over the past 10 years a diverse set of problems have been documented about the widespread use of the foster care system to provide financial assistance to the country’s increasing number of orphans, the majority of whom are living with relatives. Children’s Institute socio-legal research and consultations with government and practitioners are aimed at finding clarity and proposing solutions that are in the best interests of all affected children.
This work aimed to increase knowledge about child poverty dynamics in South Africa through data analysis to inform and evaluate pro-poor policy from the perspective of children, and child outcomes. It was an extension project to the Children Count – Abantwana Babalulekile project and part of an initiative of the Programme to Support Pro-Poor Policy Development, a partnership of the Presidency and the European Union, to support poverty-related research that could contribute to evidence for policy development.
Children Count – Abantwana Babalulekile is an ongoing project that provides time-series statistics on the situation of children in South Africa to multiple audiences. The statistics and related commentary, as well as information on the data sources, are available at childrencount.ci.org.za.
South Africa’s comprehensive range of laws, policies and programmes to realise children’s rights need to be adequately resourced in order to reach all children in need. This project has been conducting annual child-centred analyses of government’s budgets to assess whether the state is allocating and spending adequate budgets to realise children’s rights. Ultimately, the project wants to contribute to ensuring that adequate resources are allocated for the effective delivery of services to children, and that these resources are spent in children's best interests.