1. Birth Registration
Registration of a child’s birth is a critical first step towards safeguarding lifelong protection. For birth registration to be complete, birth reporting is a mandatory prerequisite. Without it, birth certificate cannot be granted. Birth reporting in Nepal follows a manual recording process of collecting basic information like child’s name, date of birth, age and parent’s name. Not surprisingly, births are not properly reported to the Village Development Committee (VDC) secretaries. Lack of birth reporting channel, especially among home deliveries in remote communities, is a nationally acknowledged problem. This situation adds pressure to the Government and VDC in planning for the delivery of basic services (e.g. immunization, child grant in Kernali districts etc.) as well as resource mobilization and budgetary allocation. Further, birth reporting can provide a powerful monitoring tool that helps to identify the number of birth in a certain period of time and compare with the number of birth registered officially. If there is a wide gap between the two, the VDC will be easily pinpointed and the secretary will be pressured to act.
The NDHS survey showed that only 42.3 percent of children under the age of 5 in Nepal have their birth registered. The impact of the lack of a birth certificate on the individual cannot be underestimated; it is a passport to protection and is required to access an increasingly wide range of services, entitlements and opportunities. Children who are not registered are excluded from many of the benefits of citizenship. A birth certificate can help to protect children from situations of exploitation and violence, such as child marriage and child labour, and achieve convictions against those who have abused a child.
Recent trends in the international environment provide opportunities for rethinking approaches to promote birth reporting / birth registration. Innovative measures to bring civil registration services to people have been evolving through the use of the newly-made available technologies. Such technologies simplify birth reporting procedure and deliver transparency, accuracy, record-keeping process, and efficiency. For example, electronic records and storage can replace paper-based records, and the use of mobile phone technology in remote rural areas needs to be further exploited. In fact, mobile penetration was at 71% in 2013, and smartphones have increased their market share annually by 20~25%. Internet penetration was 26% in 2013.
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Download the team registration form for ChildApp Appathon here !