Webinar: Mapping Social Service Workforce Training in West and Central Africa

Dec 7, 2015 |
Global Social Service Workforce Alliance

Monday, December 7, 2015

9:00 - 10:00am Washington DC, 2:00pm Dakar, 5:00pm Kampala, 9:00pm Jakarta

More than half the countries in West and Central Africa have completed or launched exercises to map and assess their child protection systems, allowing them to describe those systems and specify priority areas of engagement and investment. These exercises have supported the development of new policy frameworks, sub-national coordination mechanisms, and stronger linkages between different aspects of child protection systems. Recognizing that a strong social service workforce is a key element of any child protection system, some countries have carried out human resource gap analyses and ministerial audits to inform the strengthening of the workforce.
This webinar will explore a mapping exercise carried out in 13 countries of the West and Central Africa region to inform the development of a regional strategy to strengthen the social service workforce. The study documented and mapped university programs and training institutes to better understand how social workers and related professionals are trained and educated—both formally and informally—to engage in social work practice, especially as it is related to child protection. Speakers will discuss the rationale for the study, the methods and process used, and the results that provide an overview of universities and social work institutes and courses and qualifications available for social workers, para-professionals and NGO practitioners. Speakers will also discuss how this study is informing the development of national and regional strategies to strengthen the social welfare workforce in West and Central Africa. During the webinar, participants will have the opportunity to discuss the implications of this type of work in their countries.


Andy Brooks
Regional Child Protection Adviser, UNICEF West and Central Africa (WCARO)
Since joining UNICEF in 1999, Andy Brooks has worked in emergency response and development programming in both Africa (Sierra Leone, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Tanzania) and Asia (Sri Lanka), supporting government and other partners to develop legal frameworks, guidelines and programs to better protect children from abuse, violence and exploitation. Prior to his position at the UNICEF WCARO office, he was Chief of Child Protection at UNICEF Tanzania.
Bree Akesson, LMSW, MPH, PhD
Assistant Professor of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University

For the last 15 years, Dr. Akeeson has worked with children, families, and communities affected by crises such as poverty, disaster and war. She is currently Assistant Professor of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario, Canada. She is also a clinical social worker for the Child Psychiatric Epidemiology Group, providing support to children and families affected by trauma. She is currently organizing a regional mapping of child protection practices and related workforce needs in southeast Europe for Terre des Hommes. Dr. Akesson received her PhD from McGill University, where she was a Vanier Scholar, focusing her research on the effects of political violence on children and families in Palestine.

Please use this link to access the webinar any time after
8:45am EST on December 7:

*Note that hyperlink will not be active until immediately prior to webinar on December 7. We encourage you to bookmark this page to access.