Smart, Moral, Happy, Creative Citizens

Smart, Moral, Happy, Creative Citizens

Department of Children and Youth in policymaking move DCY aims to enhance welfare and spread 21st century skills

Considered key manpower for future national development, there are currently around 13 million children aged 0-17 and 7 million young adults aged 18-25 in Thailand, accounting for roughly 30 percent of the country’s total population.

Protecting and developing the potential of these children and youths is the direct responsibility of the Department of Children and Youth (DCY), under the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security (MSDHS), which has a vision summed up as “Smart, Moral, Happy, Creative Citizens”.

“In accordance with the mission of MSDHS to become ‘a ministry of opportunity’ for all, going forward in 2022, we are implementing the 6P principles as our main policy concerning children and youth issues,” explains  Ms. Jatuporn Rojanaparnich, DCY Director-General. 

The 6P principles are as follows:

  1. Policy to rebrand the image of the department as a policymaker instead of solely a social worker unit for individuals.
  2. Potential development of children and youths to become quality adults in society.
  3. Protection for all children and youths, especially the more than 4,200 children in 30 foster homes nationwide, under the department’s direct supervision as well as others in temporary family shelters.
  4. Partnership with government and private agencies to expand protection and development dimensions covering all areas.
  5. Prevention meaning a policy of being more proactive in acting to remedy children and youth problems and issues.
  6. Participation enhancement for children and youths to express their opinions and have a say in directing their own futures, particularly through the 8,000 children and youth councils nationwide, leading to appropriate solutions for each area.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has only aggravated all the existing children and youth issues especially due to the epidemic of Covid-19,” Ms. Jatuporn adds.

“Poverty and economic gaps have been intensified by the virus. According to data from the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Council, children in elementary school and below are most affected by these problems. They can potentially be in danger of domestic violence and violation of the four key children’s rights of survival, protection, development and participation. At least half the cases of violence and violation of children are perpetrated by family members or other close people. In addition, over 441 youngsters have lost their parents from Covid-19 and been orphaned.”

“The 2022 operation will be people-centric and focus on doing less with more impact. Currently, 92% of the annual budget is spent on welfare benefits for those aged 0-6 years old, to help families that earn less than 100,000 Baht per year per household. The development of new-borns is of critical importance and has long-lasting impact.”

“Other projects involve cooperation. For example, the Stronger (Teen) Mom campaign is our collaboration with AIS to use an online platform to build jobs and generate income for young mothers and our project with YEN-D (Young Entrepreneur Network Development) networking which supports young entrepreneurship. The department has fostered many educational and employment collaborations such as with CP ALL and Panyapiwat Technological College to give needy children a chance. We also recently raised funds under the ‘Sharing for Bigger Smiles’ campaign to give more than 8,000 special gifts to children in foster homes nationwide.”

“Moreover, the department is developing an integrated digital database of all the children with the Department of Mental Health to increase access to protection and welfare. We are also strengthening our network against violence against children, with an emphasis on reaching out to help young victims of violence themselves.”

“Children and youth are key to national development,” Ms. Jatuporn concluded. “DCY is committed to raising awareness of children and youth protection, and building a sustainable child-friendly environment in Thai society.”

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