Family strengthening programme: A sustainable social protection intervention for vulnerable children and families in Nigeria

This study appraised the family strengthening programme of the SOS Children’s Villages Nigeria and places its best practice, challenges and lessons in the public domain. Focus Group Discussion [FGD] was conducted with 48 families who were programme beneficiaries for a period of 5 years. Six stakeholders that were part of the programme development and implementation were also interviewed separately. Best practice as found from the study is the role of community stakeholders in identifying vulnerable families within their community and helping such families to achieve programme objectives using the Family Development Plan [FDP]. Challenges and key lessons are presented in the study findings. The study recommends that SDGs programmes targeted at vulnerable families must identify the need for community stakeholders in programme intervention. This should be well-thought-out in programme design, implementation and evaluation. Sustainable development programmes for vulnerable families should therefore adopt a need-based intervention rather than service count.