About Us

The National Committee for Families and Children was established as one of those entities that work upstream. While there must be direct services that children must receive (i.e. the “life preservers”)  there must also be a  body responsible for the overall protection of children and their families (i.e. ensuring as many as is possible not fall in the river in the first place.)  While departments and organizations are tasked with the everyday work that must continue to provide both the  response to the violation of children’s rights and to also work on preventative approaches, the NCFC  functions as a special advocate with policy and monitoring and evaluation responsibilities. It monitors the long term strategies that must be implemented to improve the lives of children and their families.

A group of people is sitting on the bank of a river. They see a number of other people trashing about in the river. Obviously they need to be rescued from drowning. The group jumps to attention. They start pulling people from the river, but the more they pull out of the river, the more people keep coming down the river in need of rescue, overwhelming their efforts. If the group of rescuers wants to ensure that some of the people in the river don’t drown, members of the group will have to go upstream to see why people keep falling into the river. Those who go upstream will have to figure out how to stop people from falling into the river or to provide in the first instance, some kind of life preservers to as many of those who continue to fall into the river despite their best efforts. They will also have to equip those working downstream with what is needed for more effective rescues.

 

This analogy is useful to demonstrate that it takes people working together at many different levels to ensure real and equitable human development.  It goes without saying that direct services and interventions to people are essential. But direct service alone cannot achieve real progress for people.  There is the need for policy and legal frameworks to be in place, for the public and education and prevention work to be done, for data to be available to support evidence based planning and advocacy and for coordination mechanism to be up and running so that we are all singing off the same  proverbial hymn sheet. And of course there is an absolute need for the political will.

 

The National Committee for Families and Children was established as one of those entities that work upstream. While there must be direct services that children must receive (i.e. the “life preservers”)  there must also be a  body responsible for the overall protection of children and their families (i.e. ensuring as many as is possible not fall in the river in the first place.)  While departments and organizations are tasked with the everyday work that must continue to provide both the  response to the violation of children’s rights and to also work on preventative approaches, the NCFC  functions as a special advocate with policy and monitoring and evaluation responsibilities. It monitors the long term strategies that must be implemented to improve the lives of children and their families.

Guiding Principles

The strategic direction of NCFC will change from time to time as the NCFC responds to changes in the environment that address families and children issues. However, some core principles will always guide the actions of the secretariat and the committee.

  • The work of the NCFC is based on the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Belizean Children and Families Act, the latter setting out its mandate.
  • The day to day coordination and advocacy work of the NCFC is primarily based on the National Plan of Action for Children and Adolescents.
  • The NCFC embraces the principles of integrity, respect, transparency, accountability, non-discrimination and fairness to all its employees and partners both in its internal and external activities.
  • NCFC’s main role is advocacy and coordination, which is consistent with its mission and vision statement.
  • NCFC aims at being a champion for all the rights of families and children contributing to a better quality of life for all Belizeans.

Our mission

  • The National Committee for Families and Children is commissioned and committed to promote and protect the human rights of every child and family in Belize primarily those enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Our Vision

  • The National Committee for Families and Children, Belize’s lead agency for the promotion and protection of children and family rights, contributes to and advocates for Policy and Legal reform that influences a child-centered approach to development which positively impacts the well being of children and their families.