The protection and well-being of children is directly connected to issues of livelihood, especially in emergency contexts. Families who have lost their means of making a living in a crisis may pull their children, especially girls, out of school to contribute to household incomes, do chores or care for siblings. Children who have lost their parents may turn to harmful livelihood strategies to meet their basic needs.
Governments and international agencies increasingly turn to economic strengthening programs (skills training, savings groups, microcredit, cash transfers, etc.) to help communities recover from crisis and build wealth. The impacts of these programs on children have been poorly documented. Economic strengthening (ES) programs can have many positive effects for children including in mental and nutritional health, access to healthcare, and school enrolment. But they can also introduce risk of harm, undermining the benefits. Introducing new economic incentives may cause children to change their routines in dangerous ways.
The CPC Task Force on Livelihoods and Economic Strengthening seeks to enhance the protection and well-being of crisis-affected children through sustainable livelihoods approaches and economic strengthening of households. The Task Force strives to improve the design, quality and effectiveness of economic programming, both with adults, and in economic interventions targeting adolescents themselves.
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March 6, 2015: Keeping Children and Families Together with Economic StrengtheningThis symposium, sponsored by the CPC Network, Women's Refugee Commission, and FHI 360, explored current best practices and evidence on the use of economic strengthening interventions to prevent child separation and support child reintegration back into families and communities.
May 13, 2014: Global Perspectives on Adolescent Health and Economic Strengthening ConferenceThis forum was devoted to innovative economic strengthening research dedicated to improving health, education, and well-being outcomes of vulnerable children, adolescents, families, and communities in low-resource settings, including children affected by HIV/AIDS and humanitarian disasters.