Benin: Legal standards and basic rights in child protection centers




Project title: Promotion of fundamental rights for disadvantaged, mistreated and socially excluded children in welfare establishments of the civil society


Project regions: Ouémé, Atlantique, Mono in Benin


Duration: 1st Dec. 2012 - 31st March 2016


Local partner: ESGB Benin



Children in desperate circumstances often find shelter in child protection centers. There, they are usually dependent on the goodwill of the staff, who have inadequate social educational standards and are only partly able to implement the fundamental rights of the children. Most facilities are far from promoting the integral development of children. The children do not receive adequate healthcare, they sleep in precarious conditions and the quality of food is insufficient. Measures for physical and psychological recovery of violated children and their social reintegration are not, or rarely offered. Fundamental rights, such as the right to freedom of expression, (early childhood) education, personal development and the special support of children with disabilities, are insufficiently promoted by the institutions.


Benin's government, supported by UNICEF and the network ReSPESD, has developed standards and norms, which most shelters do not meet at the moment. There is a lack of expertise for the implementation of those standards and a lack of professional, organizational and material resources.

Project Objectives


Living conditions and rehabilitation opportunities for about 700 children in child protection centers of the network ReSPESD have improved through the introduction and implementation of professional and child-rights-based standards and the construction of adequate infrastructure in the facilities. In particular:

  • Children receive protection, face well maintained centers with decent living and learning conditions.
  • They have education and training opportunities in the facilities.
  • Children and their rights are respected and they receive qualified social care. The educational work is based on professional and child-rights-based standards.
  • The viability of the institutions is strengthened.
  • Children in the center “La Passerelle” of ESGB are prepared appropriately for their reintegration, their social and family environment as well as their professional future. “La Passerelle” serves as an idol for other child protection centers.

Involved groups


  •         700 supervised children, who experience protection, support and promotion in the centers, and indirectly their families and social communities
  •            9 civil society organizations of the network ReSPESD with centers for the support of children (orphanages, child protection centers, centers for children with disabilities)
  •            9 responsibles of the facilities
  •            9 social workers
  •            40 employees in the social and administrative fields
  •           Journalists, representatives of radio and television and their networks
  • State and civil society duty bearers (ministry officials, regional social services, traditional and religious authorities)


Project costs: 555.360 €


Financial Partners:

  •          German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
  •          Sternstunden e.V.
  • ESGB
  •          Kinderrechte Afrika e.V. (donations)

Cover photo: children's hands in “La Passerelle”, our partner's center that serves as transitory refuge for girls who have experienced violence or other situations of distress. © Luise Hoffmann


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Fax: 07821/985755


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