The Children’s Act 2014 requires the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy to be reviewed within three years of its adoption. The review of the Strategy (the Review) is now complete, meeting its 18 August 2022 deadline.
The Review drew on the findings of various reports and evaluations, including recent reporting, a Process Evaluation, evaluations of specific work programmes, insights and themes from research reports and engagements released since the development of the Strategy.
Some small-scale targeted engagement with key stakeholders was also undertaken during June and July 2022, including with children and young people themselves. Read the summary engagement reports.
The Review focused on the things that will help drive and prioritise government policy and harness collective action outside of government.
Review findings and recommendations
The Review found that, overall, there is strong and ongoing support for the Strategy. Stakeholders agreed that the Strategy’s vision and outcomes remain sound and relevant and provide a strong basis for collective action to improve the wellbeing of children and young people. They also noted that the indicators and measures could be improved over time, and that the current Strategy provides the means to do that.
Based on this feedback and the other inputs into the Review, no changes will be made to the Strategy Framework (the vision, outcomes, principles and the approach of improving indicators and measures over time). No further consultation will be required in relation to this Strategy Review. See the Briefing below for more information about the Strategy Review Advice to Ministers
However, the Review found that there is considerable scope to better support the implementation of the Strategy. It identified the key enablers that will help the Strategy be a catalyst for, and driver of, system change.
The Review also noted that central government needs to continue to evolve how it works with iwi/Māori and communities at different levels.
Government agencies have collective ownership of, and responsibility for, working alongside communities to implement the Strategy. Key enablers that will help drive and support the implementation of the Strategy are:
- improving governance arrangements
- harnessing collective ownership and involvement of children and young people
- enabling whānau-centred, community-led approaches
- improving measurement, monitoring and reporting
- embedding te ao Māori concepts of wellbeing.
Sitting within these five enablers are 16 recommendations that will help advance the wellbeing of children and young people – see table in A3 Strategy Review Overview document.
These are the areas that have the most potential to make a positive difference towards achieving the Strategy’s outcomes. They each have a Lead Chief Executive/s, who will act as system convenor to help drive policy and investment decisions and support implementation.
The key priority areas include:
- reducing child poverty and mitigating the impacts of socio-economic disadvantage (DPMC, with further work required to identify a joint Lead CE)
- enhancing child and whānau wellbeing in the first 1000 days (DPMC, with further work required to identify a joint Lead CE )
- addressing racism, discrimination and stigma (Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Education)
- enhancing the mental wellbeing of children and young people (Ministry of Health, with further work required to identify a joint Lead CE).
Since finalising the Review, work has begun to progress the recommendations, identify Lead Chief Executives, develop Roadmaps, and explore what success will look like. See the Briefing below for more information about implementation of the Strategy Review