CHARTING A NEW COURSE FOR ORPHANED AND VULNERABLE CHILDREN IN SOUTH AFRICA: THE DEVELOPMENT OF A CORE PACKAGE OF SERVICES AS A NATIONAL RESPONSE.
Government Capacity Building and Support Programme.
South Africa has 2,7 million orphaned children of which 1 728 000 is paternal-, 530 000 maternal and 505 000 double orphans. Challenges regarding the interventions, dosage of services, service delivery strategies, as well as the capacity of the workforce to effectively address the needs of OVC's, has limited the effective services to children.
Through the GCBS programme, the DSD developed the Core Package of Services for OVC's which will form the standardized intervention strategy. The Core Package is embedded in an Afrocentric theory of change and informed by evidence-based interventions that include national incentives and programmes. The draft concept document was finalised in consultation with the DSD on a National and Provincial level along with the input of key stakeholders. The final Package of Services was selected to systematically address the needs of OVC's by mobilizing the protective resources of children, families and communities.
The resulting Core Package is a Prevention and Early Intervention program that addresses the vulnerable child holistically across seven key domains, namely Child Care and Protection, Psychosocial support, HIV/AIDS, Health Promotion, Food & Nutrition, Economic Strength and Education Support. The interventions include effective screening processes, selected Social Behavioural Change curriculums, guided psycho-social support theme, support through Drop-In centres and the targeted use of government incentives and opportunities. The monitoring and evaluation processes are standardized and built into the programme.
The Core Package of Services for OVC’s will be deployed across South Africa in the coming two years through the Department of Social Development and its partners. The social service workforce must be trained to enable the large-scale rollout of the programme. Civil society and academic institutions are invited to take part in the training and rollout of the Core Package