CREATE: Introduction

A children’s rights curriculum for health workers

The CREATE curriculum is designed to provide health workers in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda with a general introduction to children’s rights and their application to day to day work practice. It has been developed through a partnership between the MS Training Centre for Development Co-operation based in Arusha, the Open University in the UK and Child Rights Education for Professionals (CRED-PRO), an international programme committed to strengthening understand and application of children’s rights in professional practice. It was produced with the active engagement of 10 authors from the four participating countries, including representatives from government, academia, professional practice and the NGO sector. The material in the curriculum has also been reviewed by a broad range of experts from all four countries. Funding for the programme was provided by the Oak Foundation in Geneva with additional support from Opito.

All four countries have ratified both the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. However, to date, relatively little training has been introduced to help health workers understand children’s rights and their implications for their daily work. The Committee on the Rights of the Child, the international body established to monitor how well governments are doing in implementing children’s rights, has recommended to the governments of Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda that they should ensure that all professionals working with children are trained in the Convention on the Rights of the Child. This curriculum is seeking to contribute to that goal. A culture of respect for children’s rights will only be achieved if all relevant professionals have a strong knowledge of what rights children have, and how to apply this knowledge in their day to day practice.

The curriculum is available online at The Open University Open Learn [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] website. It can also be downloaded as a pdf. It can be used by individuals wishing to learn more about children’s rights or it can be used by tutors, teachers, or lecturers wishing to incorporate children’s rights into their professional courses. It is an open educational resource, with few copyright restrictions, so can be adapted to accommodate the needs of particular students, or for relevance to other countries. It can be used as a complete course or taken in parts to complement other learning. A tutor guide has also been developed to provide guidance on how to use the materials and incorporate them into training courses.

The curriculum comprises 5 modules each containing between 2-4 study sessions. Each study session provides the student with:

  • a focus question that sums up what is being addressed in the session
  • key words that needs to be understood by the end of the session
  • a short introductory overview
  • learning objectives for the session
  • basic information on the topic
  • a series of learning activities to help the student apply the knowledge gained as they go through the session
  • self-assessment questions at the end of the session
  • suggested reading or additional resources

The content of the curriculum is as follows:

Module One: Childhood and children’s rights