Strengthening Social Service Systems for Vulnerable Children and Adolescents: A Conceptual Framework

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJAR.2014.05.01.Art008

Authors : Barnabas Mwansa


There is emerging global consensus on the importance of social service system strengthening for vulnerable children and adolescents in Africa, but no agreement on the conceptual definition and the scope of social service system strengthening, whether social service system strengthening is achievable or not, how to move towards it, common indicators for measuring its progress, and its long-term sustainability. This has resulted in various interpretations of the concept, emanating from different disciplinary perspectives. This paper discusses the various dimensions of social service system strengthening emerging from these interpretations and argues for the need to pay attention to the complex interactions across the various components of a social service system strengthening in the pursuit for better social service delivery to vulnerable children and adolescents in Africa. The paper highlights major components of a social service system strengthening and proposes that these are utilized for measuring social service system strengthening work.

Keywords: social services, systems strengthening, child protection system, conceptual framework, Africa.


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