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Parenting a midst daily challenges

Many traditional positive child rearing practices are eroding as poor and struggling parents focus on day-to-day survival. Although children are traditionally valued in Uganda and parents are aware of and value positive parenting, early childhood stimulation and development is not well understood and not widely practiced in rural areas of Uganda. In order to support vulnerable parents in rural and urban communities, Plan Uganda identified 5 key parenting practices critical for growth and development of children which are feeding, hygiene and sanitation, play, adult and child interaction, love and respect in family that parents dialogue on during parenting education program to raise happy, intelligent and healthy children.

Photo of Rosemary Alweny
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Community led action for children approach that Plan Uganda is using is helping unlock the strengths of the community to support child growth and development.  Participation of the vulnerable groups in the development interventions is challenging and needs deliberate strategies or efforts to reach out to them such as home visits, special invitations among others.


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Photo of Marika Shioiri-Clark

Love this, thanks so much for sharing Rosemary! Many of the Global Conversations posts from Tanzania and India have also focused on different aspects of your five pillars. One focuses specifically on the importance of finding fun and engaging ways to reframe learning, and mentions a very popular program in India that Galli Galli Sim Sim (the Indian Sesame Street) has launched. Check it out!

One other thing that several participants mentioned in their posts was the importance of the role of fathers in raising healthy children. You didn't call this out specifically, but I imagine that it's an issue you deal with at Plan. Here's one of the Global Conversations posts on this topic:

Thanks again for sharing your work!

Photo of The Mediae Company

Marika, you are very right with the mention of the importance of fun and engaging entertainment while learning. This is what we try to focus with our TV shows in Kenya - have a look at our page to learn more. We have 3 shows (one for kids, a drama, and a reality TV show about farming) which educates while entertains. Let us know what you think!

Photo of The Mediae Company

Interesting idea with the 5 pillars, it is something that we have tried to build on with our TV show Makutano Junction in Kenya - teaching and learning with both parents and children in a fun and engaging way is key to getting the message through. How do you plan to do this in the future?

Photo of Chris Drew

Rosemary, you have presented a fantastic idea. Each of the five pillars you have identified resonate with several of the areas that our content focuses on. One of the things we have learned is critical to the success of parent empowerment content is the ability to customize the content for local communities. It sounds like your on-the-ground knowledge will allow you to do just that. As this challenge progresses, perhaps we will be able to exchange insights from our respective areas of expertise.

Good luck moving ahead!

Photo of Meena Kadri

Great to hear about your community-focused local approach! And soon we'll be opening our Ideas phase – so you could start thinking about a specific project you might like to post there from Plan Uganda. The notion is to be agile during our Ideas phase – to frame a project which is specific to our challenge rather than a broader grant funding type application for your organisation – then begin to prototype it + test assumptions using tips here: and seek user feedback as you go. All the while collaborating with input from our community. You can see how things played out for a shortlisted NGO from Mumbai in our previous Amplify Challenge:

And of course, with your knowledge of this domain and low income communities on the ground, to join in on collaborative conversations on the ideas of others so we can strengthen our collective impact, together.

And here's a friendly tip: update your OpenIDEO profile so folks can appreciate who they're collaborating with here. Think skills, experience, passions & more. Looking forward to seeing more of you across conversations on this challenge...

Photo of Meena Kadri

And given OpenIDEO is all about collaboration – we thought you might also want to reach out over the potential to join forces on this idea:

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Congrats on this post being today's Featured Contribution!