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National children's symposium 2018 on children's voice - the key to sustainable development

Child Rights Governance

Ensuring adequate space for children to participate

In Zambia, there continues to be inadequate legal and policy frameworks for children and low investments in education and child protection. Moreover, public resource investment in social sectors that benefit children is declining. We aim to ensure adequate space for children to participate in planning and budgeting processes and influence national planning processes.

Our child rights governance work will:

  • Ensure an inclusive and gender-sensitive legal and policy framework which provides for children's participation in planning and budgeting processes.
  • Ensure the provision of inclusive and gender-sensitive information and materials that inform active participation of children.
  • Advocate for increased public investment in services that result in improved outcomes for children.
  • Engage the private sector in generating positive outcomes for children through a child rights business approach.
Children smile and pull funny faces

Our Focus

We advocate and promote the voices of rural children, especially girls, orphans and vulnerable children, adolescents, children under the age of five, refugees and migrant children, as well as other children affected by humanitarian crises across Zambia. We influence positive changes in legal and policy framework and practices to benefit all children.

Children look out the window

Our Approach

Be the voice:

  • Target ministries of Finance and National Development Planning to advocate for increased space for children's participation and for an increase in resource allocation to programmes benefitting children.
  • Work towards legislative policy change around General Comment 19, which puts a demand on states to allocate adequate budgets towards the realisation of children's rights.
  • Advocate for a Zambian legal framework and policies that respond to international and regional commitments to children (such as the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and African Charter on the Rights Welfare of the Child).


  • Build on our child participation model for replication at national level in areas like child focused budgets.
  • Work to ensure there is simplification of planning and budget technical documents and ensure children are actively participating in the planning and budgeting process.
  • Focus on advocacy aimed at increased inclusion and active participation by children in the key governance and accountability processes.

Achieve results at scale:

  • By increasing demand for children to participate at national level.
  • Working with the private sector on child rights business principles and investment in the social environment for business sustainability.
  • To invest in research to inform analysis for evidence-based advocacy to maximise results for all children in Zambia.
  • Applying our evidence-based approach of Child-Informed Reporting and follow-up processes.

Build partnerships:

  • Work with strategic civil society partners to develop capacity in child rights programming, child participation and communities' participation in planning and budgeting processes.
Girls sing and dance

Thematic Leadership

Save the Children collaborates with government ministries, civil society, private sector, children and their communities to promote children's rights in Zambia. This is done by scaling up our evidence-based approaches and pioneering high impact such as:

  • Child Rights Reporting
  • Investment in Children
Children with books