What is Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS)? Explained

Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) is the topic of this article. It aims to give the learners a fundamental understanding of what the term "child protection" means, information about the various services offered to kids under the government of India's Integrated Child Protection Scheme, and an overview of the juvenile justice system's approach to dealing with kids who need care and protection. Additionally, it aims to provide the learner with fundamental knowledge necessary for employment as a social worker.
Objectives of this post are:
  • To give the students a fundamental understanding of the idea and significance of child safety. 
  • To spread awareness of the different services that kids can access through the Integrated Child Protection Scheme.
  • To provide a general understanding of the juvenile justice system, which handles cases involving children who require care and protection. 4. To give information that is adequate for someone to perform a function within the juvenile justice system.

Content

  1. Meaning of Child Protection
  2. Aims and Objectives of ICPS
  3. Care, Support and Rehabilitation Services

Meaning of Child Protection 

Child protection refers to safeguarding children from any perceived or actual harm to their life, personhood, or childhood. It aims to lessen their susceptibility to injury of any type and shield them from peril. It entails making sure that no child is left outside of the social safety net and that those who do are given the assistance, care, and protection they require in order to re-enter it. Every child has the right to protection, but certain kids need extra care because they are more at risk. Child abuse, child marriage, child labor, damaging traditional practices, violence in schools, lack of parental care, and commercial sexual exploitation are all concerns that pertain to protecting children. These kids are classified by the government as "children in tough circumstances" because of their unique social, economic, and geopolitical conditions. It is crucial to make sure that all other children are protected in addition to giving these kids a safe environment. Every other right of a child is inextricably tied to child protection, and if child protection is not upheld, it has a negative impact on all other rights.

Children's physical, mental, emotional, and social development will suffer if they are not protected, which will affect the nation's productivity and quality of human capital. Early in 2006, the Department of Women and Child Development was elevated to the status of a full-fledged Ministry, and the following matters pertaining to child protection were transferred to it: The following programs are implemented: a) Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2000 and its Amendment Act, 2006; b) CHILDLINE Service; c) Scheme for Assistance to Homes for Children (Shishu Greha) to Promote InCountry Adoption; d) Scheme for Working Children in Need of Care and Protection; and e) Scheme for Children in Need of Care and Protection, as well as CARA. This was a crucial step toward unifying the Ministry's child protection responsibilities . Therefore, the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) viewed child protection as a crucial part of the nation's effort to put "child development at the center of the 11th Plan." The MWCD sought to strengthen the prevention of child rights violations, improve the infrastructure for protection services, increase access to a wider range of services of higher quality, increase investment in child protection, and increase awareness of child rights, their violation, and the situation of India's children. The National Plan of Action for Children 2005 articulated the rights agenda for the development of children.

The need for Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) 

Nearly 19% of all children on the planet live in India. Around 440 million people, or more than one third of the total population, are under the age of 18. One estimate places the number of disadvantaged children in India at 170 million, or 40% of the country's children. According to a budgeting exercise for children conducted by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, overall expenditures on children's health, education, development, and protection in 2005–2006 totaled just 3.86%, and increased to 4.91% in 2006–07. In 2005–06 and 2006–07, the percentage of resources allocated to child protection was an appallingly low 0.034%, and it stayed that way. Neglecting child protection issues leads to blatant violations of children's rights and makes them more susceptible to abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Therefore, there was a pressing need to increase funding for child protection in order to safeguard Indian children's rights. Due to funding for the Integrated Child Protection Scheme, the share of resources for child protection climbed to 0.04% in 2007–08 and to 0.06% in 2008–09.

Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS)

The Ministry of Women and Child Development closely examined the effectiveness of the current child protection programs, which led to the discovery of serious flaws and glaring gaps in the institutions, policies, programs, and execution of child protection at all levels. The existing basic structure of government is rigid, and rather than focusing on programming results, a lot of time and effort is put into preserving the structure itself. The Ministry acknowledged the following inadequacies in the current programs and schemes:
  • Deficiency in mechanisms for prevention: Policies, programmes and structures to prevent children from falling into difficult circumstances are mostly lacking. This pertains both to policies to strengthen and empower poor and vulnerable families to cope with economic and social hardship and challenges and thus be able to take care of their children, as well as to efforts to raise awareness of all India’s people on child rights and child protection situation.
  • Lack of planning and coordination: 
    • Poor implementation of existing laws and legislations; 
    •  Lack of linkages with essential lateral services for children, for example, education, health, police, judiciary, services for the disabled, etc.; 
    • No mapping has been done of the children in need of care and protection or of the services available for them at the district/ city/ state levels; 
    • Lack of coordination and convergence of programmes/ services; 
    • Weak supervision, monitoring and evaluation of the juvenile justice system. In order for child protection to be dealt with more effectively, there is a need for lateral linkages between the Ministry of Women and Child Development and other relevant sectors such as Railways, Industry, Trade and Commerce, Rural Development, Urban Affairs, Tourism, Banking, Legal Affairs, Home Affairs, Health & Family Welfare and Information & Broadcasting
  • Insufficient services relative to the needs: 
    • Most of the children in need of care and protection, as well as their families, do not get any support and services; 
    • Resources for child protection are meager and their utilization is extremely uneven across India; 
    • Inadequate outreach and funding of existing programmes results in marginal coverage even of children in extremely difficult situations; 
    • Ongoing, large scale, rural-urban migration creates an enormous variety and number of problems related to social dislocation, severe lack of shelter and rampant poverty, most of which are not addressed at all; 
    • Lack of services addressing the issues like child marriage, female foeticide, discrimination against the girl child, etc. 
    • There is very little intervention for children affected by HIV/AIDS, drug abuse, militancy, disasters (both manmade and natural), abused and exploited children and children of vulnerable groups like commercial sex workers, prisoners, migrant population and other socially vulnerable groups, etc.; and 
    • Not sufficient interventions for children with special needs, particularly mentally challenged children.
  • Inadequate infrastructure: 
    • Structures mandated by legislation are often inadequate; 
    • Lack of institutional infrastructure to deal with child protection; 
    • Inadequate number of CWCs and JJBs;
    • Existing CWCs and JJBs not provided with requisite facilities for their efficient functioning, resulting in delayed enquiries and disposal of cases. 
  • Lack of adequacy of human resources: 
    • inappropriate appointments to key child protection services leading to inefficient and non-responsive services; 
    • Lack of training and capacity building of personnel working in the child protection system; 
    • Inadequate sensitization and capacity building of allied systems including police, judiciary, health care professions, etc.
    • Lack of proactive involvement of the voluntary sector in child protection service delivery by the State/ UT Administrations; and 
    • Large number of vacancies in existing child protection institutions. 
  • Major gaps in services: 
    • improper use of institution in contravention to government guidelines; 
    • Lack of support services to families at risk making children vulnerable; 
    • Overbearing focus on institutional (residential care) with non-institutional (i.e. non-residential) services neglected; 
    • Inter-state and Intra-state transfer of children especially for their restoration to families not provided for in the existing schemes;
    • Lack of standards of care (accommodation, sanitation, leisure, food, etc.) in all institutions due to lower funding; 
    • Lack of supervision and commitment to implement and monitor standards of care in institutions; 
    • Most 24-hour shelters do not provide all the basic facilities required, especially availability of shelter, food and mainstream education; 
    • Not all programmes address issues of drug abuse, HIV/AIDS and sexual abuse related vulnerabilities of children;
    • None of the existing schemes address the needs of child beggars or children used for begging; 
    • Minimal use of non-institutional care options like adoption, foster care and sponsorship, etc. to children without home and family ties; 
    • No mechanism for child protection at community level or involvement of communities and local bodies in programmes and services;
    • Serious service and infrastructure gaps leading to few adoptions; 
    •  Cumbersome and time consuming adoption services; 
    • Lack of rehabilitation services for older children not adopted through the regular adoption process; 
    • Aftercare and rehabilitation programme for children above 18 years are not available in all States, and where they do exist they are run as any other institutions under the JJ Act 2000; and 
    • Majority of services are of poor or extremely poor quality. 
  • Weak accountability, monitoring and evaluation:
    • reporting mechanism and accountability are not clearly defined and are rarely enforced in most of the programmes and schemes; 
    • Monitoring mechanisms are not in place; 
    • Data required for planning, policy making and monitoring is not available; and 
    • Evaluation is rarely done.
The "Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS)" was created by the Ministry of Women & Child Development, Government of India, in an effort to lessen the drawbacks mentioned above and to help build a system that will effectively and efficiently protect children while avoiding service gaps. The "protection of child rights" and "the interest of the child" are its guiding concepts. Its goal is to reach out to all children, especially those who are in challenging situations, by integrating the MWCD's current child protection programs into a single, centrally funded program. The ICPS attempts to combine many vertical programs into a single, all-encompassing child protection program and integrate interventions for safeguarding kids and preventing harm. On February 26, 2009, the ICPS's implementation was approved.

Aims and Objectives of ICPS

Through the following goals, the ICPS hopes to institutionalize crucial services and enhance structures.
  1. Establish and strengthen a continuum of services for emergency outreach, institutional care, family and community based care, counselling and support services. 
  2. Put in place and strengthen necessary structures and mechanisms for effective implementation of the scheme at the national, regional, state and district levels.
  3. Define and set standards of all services including operational manuals for the functioning of statutory bodies.
The overarching goal of ICPS is "to improve the well-being of children in challenging circumstances and to reduce vulnerabilities to conditions and acts that lead to abuse, neglect, exploitation, abandonment, and separation of children." The following steps are planned to accomplish these goals:
  1. Improved access to, and quality of child protection services; 
  2. Raise public awareness about the reality of child rights, situation and protection in India; 
  3.  Clearly articulate responsibilities and enforced accountability for child protection; 
  4. Establish functioning structures at all government levels for delivery of statutory and support services to children in difficult circumstances; and 
  5. Introduce operational evidence based monitoring and evaluation

 Target groups of ICPS

The ICPS focuses its efforts on helping children who are in need of care and protection as well as those who are in dispute with the law.
  1. Child in need of care & protection, which means a child who - 
    • Is found without any home or settled place or abode and without any ostensible means of subsistence. 
    •  resides with a person (whether a guardian of the child or not) and such person has threatened to kill or injure the child and there is a reasonable likelihood of the threat being carried out, or has killed, abused or neglected some other child or children and there is a reasonable likelihood of the child in question being killed, abused or neglected by that person.
    •  Is a mentally or physically challenged or ill child, or a child suffering from terminal diseases or incurable diseases, and/or having no one to support or look after him/her. 
    •  has a parent or guardian and such parent or guardian is unfit or incapacitated to care for or supervise the child. 
    • does not have a parent/parents and no one is willing to take care of him/her, or whose parents have abandoned him/her or who is a missing and/or runaway child and whose parents cannot be found after reasonable inquiry
    • is being or is likely to be grossly abused, tortured or exploited for the purpose of sexual abuse or illegal acts.
    • is found vulnerable and is likely to be inducted into drug abuse or trafficking. 
    • is being or is likely to be abused for unconscionable gains. 
    • Is victim of any armed conflict, civil commotion or natural calamity
  2. Child in conflict with law, which means a child (below 18 years) who is alleged to have committed an offence.
  3. Child in contact with law, which means a child (below 18 years) who has come in contact with the law either as a victim or as a witness or due to any other circumstance.
The ICPS is also required to provide preventive, legal care, and rehabilitation services to any other vulnerable children, including, but not limited to, minorities, children infected with or affected by diseases, children from potentially vulnerable families and families at risk, children from socially excluded groups like migrant families, families living in abject poverty, scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, and other backward classes, families subject to or affected by discrimination, and children from scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, and other backward

ICPS Programmes and Activities

Every Indian kid has the right to a loving, caring family, to a dignified life, and protection against being taken away from his or her loved ones, violence, abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Through ICPS, the MWCD hopes to establish a wide-ranging and thorough framework for child protection in the Eleventh Plan and lay the groundwork for building a strong environment that is protective of kids. The ICPS launches new interventions while consolidating a number of already-running child safety programs. The following is what the ICPS will concentrate on:
  1. Mapping needs and services for children and families at risk. 
  2. Preparing child protection plans at district and state levels; the plan would be gradually extended to block and community levels. 
  3. Strengthening service delivery mechanisms and programmes including preventive, statutory, care and rehabilitation services. 
  4. Improving access to and quality of services provided. 
  5. Promoting and strengthening non-institutional family based care options for children deprived of parental care, including sponsorship to vulnerable families, kinship-care, in-country adoption, foster care and inter-country adoption, in order of preference. 
  6. Developing capacity of service providers.
  7. Strengthening knowledge base, awareness and advocacy. 
  8. Establishing an integrated, live, web based data base (on children in difficult circumstance, children in care, service providers and services provided), for evidence based monitoring and evaluation and service planning decision making. 
  9. Monitoring and evaluation.
  10. Building partnerships and alliances for child protection at all levels, particularly at the grass-root community and district levels. 
  11. Strengthening linkages with other bodies and institutions such as the National/ State Human Rights Commissions and National/ State Commissions for Protection of Rights of the Child, etc.

Care, Support and Rehabilitation Services

These include the following:
  • Emergency outreach program offered by "CHILDLINE." A 24/7 emergency phone service called Childline connects children in need of care and protection with short-term, long-term, and rehabilitation resources. A youngster who is having trouble or an adult acting on his behalf can contact the hotline by calling 1098. The ICPS plans to expand the CHILDLINE service to all districts and communities in order to provide a safe environment for children across the nation.
  • Open shelters in urban and suburban regions for children in need. Urban phenomena of considerable concern include the large number of homeless children, pavement dwellers, street and working children, child beggars, children leaving their families on their own, and other similar children in need of care and support. According to estimates from the Consortium for Street Children, 29% of India's population lives in urban areas, with half of those people suffering from extreme deprivation due to a lack of shelter and access to necessities like sanitization, clean water for drinking, education, health care, recreational facilities, etc. Rapid urban population growth is also a result of heavy rural-urban migration. The victims in this predicament are primarily children. With or without parental guidance, the vast majority of them wind up on streets, markets, railroad stations, etc. They may be observed begging for money, cleaning windows on cars, collecting trash, selling goods, or even dealing drugs. They may also be under the supervision of a begging or thievery gang. For survival, many of these children sell sex, and pedophilia is widespread. These children are frequently the targets of adult abuse of any form, including physical, sexual, emotional, and economic exploitation. Numerous of these children end up becoming minor offenders, drug addicts, or exploiters themselves as a result of their inhumane and harsh living situations. If left unattended, these children not only waste resources and human lives, but they also become a major burden on society. Most frequently, meeting their specific requirements falls under the purview of the State. Open shelters are adaptable structures that can adapt to the special needs of these children, capitalize on their aptitude, and provide them with the chance to develop into productive members of society. The goal of such a program is to give disadvantaged children in metropolitan areas a chance to access alternatives while being shielded from abuse and neglect on the streets. These children would eventually be weaned off of the streets and given the chance to live a respectable and useful life.
  • Sponsorship, foster care, adoption, and after-care are all examples of family-based non-institutional care. Through sponsorship, foster care, adoption, and aftercare, children can be rehabilitated and reintegrated under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act of 2000 and its Amendment Act of 2006. An individual care plan must be created for each child in family-based non-institutional care within a month by the Specialized Adoption Agency (SAA) in collaboration with the District Child Protection Society (DCPS), and after DCPS approval, it must be sent to the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) for approval within a fortnight. Within six months of the care plan's approval by the CWC, the SAA must provide a report to the DCPS on how the individual child care plan is being implemented. No child may stay in the care of a SAA for longer than a year at a time, and the individual care plan must be evaluated every six months. According on practicality and suitability, these children will receive home-based non-institutional care using any of the following methods:
    • Sponsorship: Many children are at risk of abandonment, exploitation, neglect and destitution because of poor socio-economic conditions of their families. Poor families often place their children into institutional care as a poverty coping measure. In many other cases children run away from their families because of abuse and/or exploitative conditions and often do not want to be reunited with their families. Hence, they are placed in institutions. As a result, large numbers of children are forced to spend their lives in institutions. It is an accepted fact that institutionalization of children should be the last resort and the family-based non-institutional care is a better option. To reintegrate institutionalized children into families, individual cases of children in institutions will be periodically reviewed and the reintegration into their biological family facilitated with necessary support and supervised financial assistance. Apart from the above categories of children, a significant number live in extreme conditions of deprivation or exploitation, with families those are unable to provide basic care and services to them. Under the ICPS, support services are provided to families at risk. ICPS has created a special Sponsorship and Foster Care Fund within the DCPS. Sponsorship will offer supplementary financial support to families to meet the educational, medical, nutritional and other needs of children with a view to improving the quality of their lives
    • Foster Care: Fostering is a situation in which a child spends time with a member of an extended or unrelated family, typically on a temporary basis. This agreement guarantees that the biological parents retain all of their parenting rights and obligations. This arrangement will help children whose parents are unable to care for them due to illness, death, the desertion of one parent, or any other emergency but who are not yet legally free for adoption. In order to prevent institutionalization of children in challenging situations, the goal is to eventually reunite the child with his or her own family when the family circumstances improve. The District Child Protection Society's Sponsorship and Foster Care Fund will be used under the plan to support foster care. The Child Welfare Committee must find acceptable cases or issue a foster care placement order, either independently or with assistance from a Specialized Adoption Agency (SAA). Following the Child Welfare Committee's order to place the child in foster care, a copy of the order must be forwarded to SAA for follow-up and monitoring as well as to DCPS for the disbursement of money. The Child Welfare Committee and DCPS must receive frequent reports from the SAA regarding the child's development.
    • Adoption : Adoption is a process through which a child who is permanently separated from biological parents because her/his parents have died, or have abandoned or surrendered her/him, becomes a legitimate child of a new set of parent(s) referred to as adoptive parents with all the rights, privileges and responsibilities that are attached to this relationship. Central Adoption Resource Agency (CARA) is the nodal agency for coordinating adoption work and has been primarily engaged in streamlining inter-country adoption. The number of adoptions appears to have plateaued in the last five years necessitating a proactive intervention by the Ministry. ICPS therefore incorporates a series of steps aimed at streamlining the adoption process; addressing identified bottlenecks and regional disparities; and promoting national adoptions
    • After-care programme: Juveniles in dispute with the law and children in need of care and protection up to the age of 18 can receive institutional care under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act of 2000. However, when they turn 18 and are released from their institutions, the majority of the children in care have nowhere to go. Additionally, institutional life does not adequately prepare children for life outside of the home, according to empirical research. They cannot support themselves and are readily influenced by harmful forces. These children must be prepared to support themselves as they move from institutionalized care to independent living. The creation of an after-care program is the responsibility of the District Child Protection Society. A JJB/CWC may order the placement of a juvenile or child in an after-care program based on the circumstances of the case.
  • Institutional services: The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act of 2000 states that the plan must support the construction of new institutional facilities as well as the upkeep of current institutional facilities for both children in need of care and protection and children in conflict with the law. Within a month, the relevant agency must work with DCPS to prepare an individual care plan for each child in institutional care. The individual care plan must be submitted to the CWC/JJB within a fortnight for approval once the DCPS has approved it. Within six months after the care plan's approval by the CWC/JJB, the involved agency must report to DCPS on the progress of the individual child care plan's implementation. Every six months, the personalized care plan must be evaluated. Prescribed standards of care for children in institutions should be followed when establishing the institutions.
    • Shelter homes : While a large number of urban marginalized children are in need of day care services, there are many others who require residential care for a temporary period for one or more reasons. These include children without parental care, run away children, migrant children, etc. The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2000 empowers State Governments to recognize reputed and competent voluntary organizations, who cater to the needs of such children. The State Government shall provide financial assistance to set up and administer Shelter Homes for such children. 
    • Children’s homes : A large number of children in need of care and protection who enter the juvenile justice system through the Child Welfare Committees (CWCs) are in need of residential care and protection during the pendency of any inquiry and subsequently for their long-term care, treatment, education, training, development and rehabilitation. The J. J. Act 2000 empowers the State Government either by itself or in collaboration with voluntary organizations to set up Children’s Homes in every district or group of districts for the reception and residential care of such children. These homes shall serve as a home away from home and provide comprehensive child care facilities to children for ensuring their all-round development. They shall work towards enhancing the capabilities and skills of children and work with their families with the view of facilitating their reintegration and rehabilitation into mainstream society 
    • Observation homes : Children in conflict with law who enter the juvenile justice system through the Juvenile Justice Boards (JJBs) are in need of adequate residential care and protection during the pendency of any inquiry regarding them under the J.J. Act 2000. The Act empowers the State Governments to establish and maintain either by itself or under an agreement with voluntary organizations, observation homes in every district or group of districts for their temporary reception. In order to facilitate and expedite setting up of Observation Homes in every district or group of districts, the scheme shall provide financial support to the State Governments and Union Territory Administrations. 
    • Special homes : Children in conflict with the law committed by the Juvenile Justice Boards (JJBs) for long term rehabilitation and protection require institutional services. The State Governments are empowered to establish and maintain either by themselves, or under an agreement with voluntary organisations, special homes in every district or group of districts for the reception and rehabilitation of juveniles in conflict with law. In order to facilitate and expedite setting up of Special Homes in every district or group of districts, the scheme shall provide financial support to the State Governments and Union Territory Administrations 
    • Specialised services for children with special needs: A significant number of children affected by HIV and AIDS and substance abuse, as well as mentally or physically challenged children are in need of long term care because of abandonment, death of one or both parents, or inability of parents to care for them. Such children are especially vulnerable as they are least likely to have family care alternatives and hence require specialized institutional care and treatment including medical, nutritional, and psychological support. The growing epidemic of HIV and AIDS in India has affected the lives of children in many ways. Infected children (those who are HIV+) are often in need of long term special care to fight the disease. Many affected children – those who either live with a family member suffering from AIDS, or have lost their parents and/or other family members to AIDS, need assistance and support because of their family circumstances. Similarly, there are a large number of children in difficult circumstances in India, because of substance abuse, including children who are either drug addicts themselves or are affected because their parents or other family members are drug addicts. Some children are used by drug traffickers as carriers of drugs and they often gradually fall into the trap of substance abuse, often leading to delinquent behaviour. It has also been observed that poverty and lack of social security and medical services tend to cause parents to abandon children with physical and mental disability. Such children are also in need of specialized care and services to meet their health, nutrition, educational needs and emotional well being. The ICPS shall provide an additional component to institutions having children with special needs and shall provide flexibility to the State Government to either integrate the programme for children with special needs in its existing institutions or support setting up of specialized homes for such children. The primary focus however shall be on integrating services for children with special needs in existing homes. A separate home for such children shall only be set up in a situation where there are a large number of children with special needs in a district or group of districts
  • General grant-in-aid for need based/innovative interventions: While an attempt has been made to incorporate all major interventions/services for all children in difficult circumstance into the ICPS, the Ministry recognizes the importance of supporting need-based/innovative intervention programmes. Such programmes shall depend on the specific needs of a district/city and may be initiated as pilot projects: for example, special programmes for children of prisoners, children of sex workers, etc. This component can also be used for post disaster rehabilitation work. The scheme shall provide flexibility to the State Governments to initiate innovative projects on issues/risks/vulnerabilities, which are not covered by the existing programmes of this scheme. The State Child Protection Society shall have a general grant-in-aid fund under which such projects can be supported

Statutory support services

  • Child welfare committees (CWCs): As the final authority to decide cases involving the care, protection, treatment, development, and rehabilitation of children in need of care and protection, as well as to meet their basic needs and uphold their human rights, the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Act, 2006 mandates the establishment of a Child Welfare Committee in each district. The ICPS shall provide sufficient infrastructure and financial support to the State Governments and UT Administrations in order to facilitate the establishment of CWCs in every district and to ensure their efficient operation.
  • Juvenile justice boards (JJBs):  Each district must have a juvenile justice board to handle issues involving children who have run afoul of the law, according the J.J. Act. The ICPS must give State Governments and UT Administrations the necessary infrastructural and financial support in order to make it easier to establish a JJB in each district and to guarantee its efficient operation.
  • Special juvenile police units (SJPUs):  In order to coordinate and improve the police's interaction with children, the J. J. Act calls for the establishment of Special Juvenile Police Units in each district and city. The SJPU includes all of the police personnel assigned to the district or city as juvenile/child welfare officers. The ICPS is required by law to place two paid social workers in each SJPU to support the unit. These social workers will be chosen by the District Child Protection Society and assigned to the SJPU as needed. At least one of the two social workers should be a woman and have experience in child protection. These two social workers' salaries will be covered under the DCPS budget line item.

    Child tracking system

    The Ministry of Women and Child Development is aware of the severe lack of data and information available at the moment about matters relating to child protection. Due to this disconnect, it is impossible to comprehend the scope of the issue, including the number of children in need of assistance and the resources they require. The Ministry of WCD will create an efficient system for managing and reporting child protection data as well as a tool for observing the execution of all of its child protection schemes as part of the ICPS in order to close this gap. This will be accomplished by building a resource base for child protection-related topics and implementing a web-enabled data management system on child protection. The creation of a national database for the tracking of missing children and eventual repatriation and rehabilitation is also envisaged. Since this is a time- and resource-intensive operation that requires a lot of complexity, it will be progressively developed and extended across the entire nation. The Central Project Support Unit (CPSU) of the ICPS will set up the Child Tracking System. With the help of specially created web-enabled software, the CPSU will provide uniform data entry methods and unified processes to enable centralized coordination. At the state level, this child tracking system will be set up and run by SPSU and SCPS with assistance from DCPS. Two parts make up the Child Tracking System: A web-based child protection management information system (MIS) and a national website for missing children, which both provide organized and centralized methods for tracking missing children, are both examples of such systems.

    Service Delivery Structure

    The State and District Child Protection Societies (SCPS & DCPS/DCPC) are being established as the essential units at State and District levels for the implementation of the scheme in order to ensure successful service delivery.

    At the state level, all child rights and protection initiatives are coordinated and carried out by the SCPS. The Secretary overseeing ICPS is in charge of the SCPS. State child protection committee (SCPC), State adoption advisory committee, and State adoption resource agency are among the committees that fall within the purview of the SCPS (SARA). Every State/UT is required to have a State Child Protection Committee (SCPC) that deals with ICPS and is chaired by the State Secretary to oversee implementation.

    At the district level, all child rights and protection initiatives must be coordinated and carried out by the DCPS/DCPC. The DCPS/DCPC is organized as follows: District Child Protection Officer; Protection Officer - Institutional Care; Protection Officer - Non-Institutional Care; Legal-cum-Probation Officer; Counselors, Social Workers, Outreach Workers, and Community Volunteers. Chairman of the Zilla Parishad. The District Child Protection Committee (DCPC), Sponsorship and Foster Care Approval Committee (SFCAC), Block Level Child Protection Committee (BLCPC), and Village Level Child Protection Committee are among the committees that work under the DCPS (VLCPC).

    Reference

    1. Ministry of Women & Child Development (2010), The Integrated Child Protection Scheme, New Delhi. http://wcd.nic.in/icpsmon/st_abouticps.aspx, accessed on 20.8.2013. 
    2. ICPS Brochure of NIPCCD. http://nipccd.nic.in/trng-prg-frame.htm accessed on 20.8.2013. 
    3. ICPS at a glance. http://wcd.nic.in accessed on 21.8.2013. 
    4. http://www.childlineindia.org.in/Integrated-Child-Protection-Scheme-ICPS.htm accessed on 22.8.2013. http://wcd.nic.in/icpsmon/st_abouticps.aspx accessed on 21.8.2013. 
    5. http://wcd.nic.in/icpsmon/st_usefulresources.aspx accessed on 21.8.2013.

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