Sophie Shugg Senior Child Rights Specialist

Sophie Shugg
Senior Child Rights Specialist
Research objective
Investigated the benefits of
birth registration:
• How birth registration directly
benefits individual children
• Whether birth registration is
used by governments for
planning and policy purposes
Case studies were
undertaken in four countries
• India
• Kenya
• Sierra Leone
• Vietnam
Mixed methodology
• 119 interviews
• 41 focus groups
• Statistical analysis
Denise (age 13) and her sister Violet (age 15) live alone in a village
in Rwanda. Their father died in the 1994 genocide and their
mother died after many year’s struggle with HIV. Plan is working in
Rwanda to help orphaned children like Denise and her sister access
education, vocational training and psychosocial support.
1. Birth registration should not be
implemented in isolation
2. Consider the potential unintended
consequences of incentives and initiatives
to promote universal birth registration
3. Need to concentrate on increasing birth
registration rates among the most
vulnerable and excluded
4. All efforts to advocate for effective,
comprehensive, and rights-based CRVS
NEPAL: Universal Birth Registration Program
The birth registration rate for under-fives in Nepal is 42%.
In districts where Plan International work, the average rate
of birth registration is 70%.
NEPAL: Plan’s approach
Increase awareness around the right to birth
Birth and other vital events registration mechanism
Birth registration integrated with community health
services and early childhood education
Government and civil society organisations use birth
registration data for the purposes of planning and
Vital Event Registration System
Strengthen a systems based
Increase government
Ensuring disaggregated data
is collected
Increasing awareness
• Media campaigns, peer-topeer education, door-todoor visits, and street
• Training community groups
• Celebrating of the vital
events registration day
Do birth registration
campaigns reinforce
discrimination if there
unequal access to
Integrated approach
Mobile health clinics that
o vaccinations
o birth registration
• Integrating birth
registration in
emergency responses
• Integrating birth
registration with child
protection programing
What are the unintended
consequences of the
incentive approach?
Birth Registration Data
“If you don’t know how many people or how many localities
don’t have safe drinking water you wouldn’t know how
many wells to go and dig. If you don’t know how many
deaths occur as a result of childbirth, you don’t know the
magnitude of the intervention [that’s needed]. You need
data, you need information… A lot of the information that is
routine in developed countries is not routine here.” Government
Official, Ministry of Planning
Together we can
transform the world for
Children learning at a primary school in Cambodia. Plan aims to strengthen
the primary education for girls belonging to ethnic minorities, of whom only
half even begin primary school.