Project of Support to the National Action Plan (NAP) to Combat Child Labour in Malawi

Project Duration
September 2009
March 2013
Funding and Year

The project aims to support the Government of Malawi’s efforts to implement the National Action Plan to combat child labor.

The Problem

According to the Malawi Demographic and Health Survey of 2004, at least 37% of the children between 5 and 15 years of age were involved in child labor in 2002. Child labor is found mainly in agriculture and the community/ personal service sector. To date, Malawi has implemented two successful USDOL-funded child labor programs. The project will enhance the GovernmentofMalawi’seffortsto combat child labor by supporting the finalization and implementation of the NAP, in line with the Malawi Growth Development Strategy’soverallpriorityonpovertyreductionandthe draft Decent Work Country Programme.

Our Strategy


The project will withdraw and prevent 4,350 children from the worst forms of child labor (WFCL) in targeted agricultural and rural sites, including children working in the tea and tobacco sector. The project will also target the withdrawal and prevention of 632 children from the WFCL in targeted urban sites of Malawi. 4,882 children will receive educational services and 100 children will be targeted through non-educational services. The project will target children working in agriculture in Kasungu District, Mzimba District, and Mulanje District and children involved in child domestic labor in Lilongwe District.

Immediate objectives include:

  • Strengthening an enabling legislative and policy environment on the elimination of child labor towards the global goal of the elimination of WFCL by 2016
  • Replicating existing models of intervention and developing new models of intervention to lay the foundations to establish child labor free zones using an integrated area based approach (IABA) in three districts
  • Building the capacity of tripartite partners (employers’andworkers’organizations), key role players (parents and guardians of targeted children), and other stakeholders (District and Community Child Labour Committees) so they can support the implementation of the IABA.

Summary of Activities:

  •  ProvidesupporttowardstheMinistryofLabor’s finalization, popularization and implementation of the National Action Plan (in collaboration with social partners)
  • ProvidesupporttowardstheMinistryofLabor’s endorsement and popularization of the Child Labor Policy
  • Collaborate with the Ministry of Labor and stakeholders to identify at least two priority legislation/policies needing to be targeted, including the Tenancy Bill
  • Workwithworkers’organizations,including the Tobacco Tenancy and Allied Workers Union to provide their members with training on their rights and lobbying for their rights as tenants
  • Provide a training of trainers of enforcement officers using the existing enforcement manual
  • Support strengthening the capacity of the Child Labor Unit to transform it into a Department with the Ministry of Labor
  • Provide support to the development of an integrated national child labor monitoring system, including providing equipment and software to scale up the database in non-target districts
  • At the community, district, and national levels, develop communication and advocacy strategies with implementing agencies to create awareness on child labor, forced labor, trafficking, and negative cultural practices and beliefs related to child labor and HIV
  • Establish District Child Labor Committees and Community Child Labor Committees or rejuvenate existing ones
  • Create recreation centers in three targeted districts to ensure children have access to recreation after school and are not at risk of child labor in the afternoon
  • Establish transit homes for child victims of trafficking awaiting repatriation
  • Provide assistance to repatriated children to access formal or informal schools and/or vocational training
  • Lobby and advocate the Government of Malawi to endorse the country’sTraffickingBilland support the Ministry of Labor as it institutes discussions and collaboration with the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Home Affairs, and other relevant authorities in neighboring countries (Zambia, South Africa, Mozambique) for the return of trafficked children
  • Work to establish standards for the protection of children (14-17 years) in domestic work by improving working conditions
  • Create linkages with school feeding programs, cash transfer programs, and counseling for project beneficiaries
  • Provide awareness raising on child labor in the small-medium enterprise (SME) sector
  • Collaborate with the FAO to strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Agriculture and agriculture organizations to respond to child labor in the agriculture sector



International Labor Organization (ILO)
Implementing Partners:
Children and Community Development, Employers’ and Workers’ Organizations, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Women
Contact Information:
(202) 693-4843 / Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking (OCFT)
Child Labor