Social protection of children
Children’s rights are those rights and freedoms that every child should have (every person under 18 is recognized as a child), regardless of any differences: race, gender, language, religion, place of birth, national or social origin, financial state or other situation. A child must grow up in an atmosphere of love and kindness to enable harmonious development, in a family, among close and loving people. The task of adults is to help the child to prepare for an independent life, become a full member of society, to create conditions for normal physical and intellectual development of a child.
Child protection is a system of measures that ensures protection of a child’s legitimate rights and interests through the development of regulatory documents that determine the legal status of children; regulation on child labor; improve the system of guardianship, trusteeship and adoption of children left without parental care; create of a network of specialized social services and institutions for conducting corrective and rehabilitation work with children in need of appropriate care. Child protection and protection of legitimate interests of children and families are among the main directions of national policy of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Over the years of independence, Kazakhstan has ratified the main international documents on child protection. The state also adopted certain laws and decrees that spell out the rights of minors. International and national legal documents are designed to solve the main problems and threats faced by children.
Different groups of children need different types of care and equal social protection. The priority groups of children in need of social protection include: orphans; children left without parental care; children from dysfunctional families; children from foster families and large families, single-parent families; children with special features of functional development; children of unemployed parents; victims of armed conflicts, environmental and technological disasters; children from refugee and migrant families; children in contact with the law and children preventively monitored by the bodies of internal affairs.
Three branches of government are responsible for social protection of children: legislative, executive and judicial. The priority belongs to the state and to the institutions established by the state, which formulate social policy and legislation regarding children, ensure their implementation, and guarantee social security. Subjects also include political parties, public organizations, charitable unions, religious institutions, the media, enterprises and authorized institutions, children and youth organizations, private sponsors or charity members.
A special role in the child protection is played by the family and the school, as well as by special social services, like municipal services, a system of stationary institutions, shelters, orphanages, boarding schools, institutions for additional education and child development, specialized centers for psychological, medical, social and pedagogical support, counseling and rehabilitation services, etc. Subjects of social protection also include social workers, social educators and other professionals.