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How a program in Burkina Faso reduced violence against children by 58%

8 February 2019
Project Spotlight

The Evaluation Fund was launched in 2011 to support evaluations of programs that are designed to prevent violence against children. We and our partners believe that a critical step to reducing violence against children in low- and middle-income countries is to grow the evidence base for what works and what doesn’t, and to use these findings to shape effective violence prevention policy and programming. To date, we have funded 17 research projects in 16 countries. Over the next year, we will be releasing the results of these evaluations to the field.

Today, we are publishing the first set of findings from a very promising program in Burkina Faso that coaches parents on child well-being and couples this with economic support, alleviating the additional stress and higher risk of violence that accompanies extreme poverty.

The program, implemented by Trickle Up, targets women and their children (ages 10-15) living in extreme poverty in the Yatenga province. The goal of this research project was to discover the effectiveness of this program and how it achieved its impact.

The results of the evaluation are very encouraging. Some of the findings include:

  • A reduction in violence against children by 58%, including both physical and emotional violence. 

  • Lower symptoms of depression and trauma among children who participated in the program.

  • Higher self-esteem of children whose households received coaching and economic support.

  • An improvement in parenting attitudes, including the reduction of harsh discipline and an improvement in the relationship between the caregiver and child.

However, it’s not enough to simply release the findings – we must also ensure that this research is accessible to advocates and program implementers who can use this information to improve their work in reducing violence against children.

To facilitate this, we will be developing two-page policy briefs that highlight what we have learned from these studies and translates complex reports into something relatable to a wider audience.

The field of violence prevention will move forward across Africa, Asia and the Americas as these new studies are unveiled, shedding light on what works to protect children from harm. The Evaluation Fund briefs, featuring approaches such as this in Burkina Faso, provide the much-needed evidence that violence is indeed preventable when adapted to local contexts.

Catherine Maternowska, Lead for Data, Evidence & Solutions at the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children.

Check out our first evidence brief on the program evaluation conducted in Burkina Faso and let us know how you engaged with the brief and its findings.

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