Towards Culturally Specific Solutions: Evidence from Ghanaian Kinship Caregivers on Child Neglect Intervention

Alhassan Abdullah, Margarita Frederico, Ebenezer Cudjoe, Clifton R. Emery

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Recognising the signs and finding solutions to the risk and needs of neglected children remains a challenge in child protection practice despite a global increase in the number of reported child neglect cases. This situation is compounded by the impact of cultural practices on how neglect is perceived. Drawing on semi-structured in-depth interviews with 31 kinship caregivers, this study sought to explore how the culturally informed traditional kinship care practice in Ghana can be considered an intervention strategy for parental neglect. Proactive intervention, prevention of abandonment and utilisation of family support emerged as ways kinship care practice can help resolve child neglect issues. This study's findings suggest that kinship care options could help prevent severe forms of child neglect and prevent instances of child neglect at their onset. The study highlights the importance of culture and tradition when considering approaches to addressing neglect of children, which could be adapted to other cultures as it provides learning regarding where it is safe to have the extended family involved from the beginning where there is suspected neglect. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)402-415
Number of pages14
JournalChild Abuse Review
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • caregivers
  • child neglect
  • Ghana
  • kinship care
  • neglect intervention


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