CDF Overview

Children’s Dignity Forum (CDF) is a voluntary, private and non-governmental child’s rights centered Civil Society Organization that was founded and registered in Tanzania in 2006 under the NGO Act No. 24/2002. Our headquarters are in Dar es Salaam with our other offices in Mara and Dodoma Regions.

CDF is the leading organization in Tanzania working towards the protection and upholding of the rights of children, particularly the girl child. Through creating working forums to empower children, young women, families and the society in general. This goes hand in hand with developing the capacity and skills to address Violence against Women and Children (VAWC) particularly Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), child marriage and teenage pregnancy.

CDF’s work is geared towards highlighting children’s issues, with the intention of influencing public attitudes, policies and building the capacity (on legal and human rights issues) of child-focused organizations in Tanzania.
We strive to provide a forum for dialogue and exploration of contentious issues affecting women and children
CDF believes that children should always come FIRST in all aspects of its work!

Vision

CDF envisages a Tanzania landscape where children dwell in a context permeated with dignity and where social justice is upheld.

Mission

CDF is a non-profit organization that works for promotion of children’s rights for most vulnerable children , through creation of working forums that empower children, families and communities.

Our Core Values

In carrying out its programs CDF espouses the following 3 values:

Gender Equality (Involves mainly creation or promotion of similar conditions necessary for access to resources, benefits, and participation for both sexes)

Partnership and Participation (None imposition or suppression of views or opinions on others, but instead working together towards consensus building), and

Voice of the Children (ensuring that children’s voices are audible and guide or inform the development process accordingly)

Approaches

CDF promotes a holistic advocacy approach which embodies the inclusion of all community actors, stakeholders and community members. The approaches aim at enabling the communities design own activities, generate own ideas, and develop information. The approaches promote children to contribute freely and express their views accordingly, and with confidence in front of other community members. Other elements of CDF’s specific approaches are listed hereunder.

Geographic Coverage

Article 8 of the CDF Constitution empowers the organization to operate all over Tanzania. So far CDF is operating in four regions in Tanzania, namely, Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Mara and Dodoma regions.

Institutional Governance

The CDF is administered and managed by the Executive Director through the overseeing of the CDF Board of Directors. The Executive Director is the head of the organization, chief administrator and spokesperson of the CDF. The Executive Director is accountable to the CDF Board of Directors. Board of Directors reports to the Annual General Meeting.

Program Achievements

Since its inception in 2006 up to now, CDF has made the following achievements

Making Child Marriage a national agenda: Adopted from the first national consultative meeting on Ending Child Marriage in Tanzania that was organised by CDF and supported by the Sigrid Rousing Trust (SRT) under the FORWARD technical support in 2007. Child Marriage is now a national agenda with both national and international interest. CDF in collaboration with Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MoHCDGCED) under the UNFPA and FORWARD support invited her Excellency Graca Machel to launch the National Ending Child Marriage Campaign “Child Marriage Free Zone Campaign” in August 2014. The MoHCDGCED has recently launched the National Action Plan to End Violence against Children and Women which is one of the result of the advocacy activities led by CDF under the technical support of FORWARD.

National and International recognition: CDF is well recognised, at the International level, CDF is a member of Girls Not Brides a Global Partnership to End Child Marriages; at the national level CDF is working closely with the government of Tanzania through MoHCDGECD, MoJCA , MoEVT and MoFAIC.  Recently CDF has worked with MoFAIC in requesting the Government of Tanzania to Co- Sponsor the UN General Assembly resolution on child, early and forced marriage, and the action was successful and the Tanzania Government agreed to Co-sponsor the resolution.

National and International recognition: CDF is well recognised, at the International level, CDF is a member of Girls Not Brides a Global Partnership to End Child Marriages; at the national level CDF is working closely with the government of Tanzania through MoHCDGECD, MoJCA , MoEVT and MoFAIC.  Recently CDF has worked with MoFAIC in requesting the Government of Tanzania to Co- Sponsor the UN General Assembly resolution on child, early and forced marriage, and the action was successful and the Tanzania Government agreed to Co-sponsor the resolution.

CDF holds two important secretaariats : Tanzania Ending Child Marriage Network (TECMN) –a National Partnership on Ending Child Marriage and MenEngage Tanzania and the organization is the Chair of the Children’s Agenda Coalition.

CDF has managed to partner with media houses in expanding visibility of its interventions. This is an effective method in making other partners aware of CDF’s activities. Sharing of information and knowledge through the media proves to be a good way of avoiding duplication of interventions and improving efficiency.

The intervention approach adopted by CDF on direct service provision involves empowering the girl child to take charge of her destiny. This has enhanced understanding of the girl child’s needs and expanded development opportunities for the girl child. CDF has managed to establish 205+ girls clubs with members ranging from 15 to 20 and 8 young women networks with 30 members each, reached 70,000+ girls and young women through training and advocacy, supported 506 girls and young women to establish income-generating activities with ¾ of them reporting this as their main source of income which averages 60,000/- per month. It has reached more than 500,000+ community members through campaign and advocacy, and trained 4500+ different stakeholders such as teachers, district officers, traditional leaders, central government officials etc.

CDF is a leading force in promoting child participation in Tanzania. CDF provides leadership for the Tanzania National Child Participation Task Force under the children’s agenda coalition, which includes membership of international and national institutions such as the MoHCDGECD and UNICEF. This leadership role has involved facilitation and preparation of the National Child Participation Tool Kit, National Child Participation Action Plan and National Guidelines for the establishment of the children councils. On top of all this, CDF has energetically engaged itself in strengthening of Children Councils in Hai District, Magu District, Temeke District, Lindi Region, Mtwara Region, Zanzibar, Mwanza Njombe, Iringa and Mbeya Regions and the JCURT in general. With such vast and resourceful experiences, CDF comes is a vital champion and decisive partner in child participation issues in Tanzania.