Parenting in the Social Welfare System in the Philippines

About this project

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  January 2022 - December 2024
Principal Investigators Jennel Drezza Fe C. Reyes (Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines), Professor Liane Peña Alampay (Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines)
Research Team Dr Bernice L Mamauag (University of Philippines - Visayas), Dr Bernadette Madrid (University of Philippines - Manila)
Partners UNICEF Philippines, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Child Protection Network


Implementation research to examine and support the scale-up of Parenting for Lifelong Health (PLH) within the government conditional cash transfer system, and evaluate the feasibility, accessibility, relevance, and impact of digital-hybrid modules in this context.


To support national and global initiatives to address violence against children (VAC), the multisectoral collaboration PLH-Philippines has been developing and testing, via a series of systematic steps, a locally adapted parent support intervention called Masayang Pamilya (MaPa, or Happy Family). An initial pilot randomised control trial tested with families within the national Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) system showed significant and sustained reduced risk for child maltreatment when compared to the control group who underwent the usual Family Development Sessions (FDS).

In response to the crisis wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2020-2021 PLH-Philippines adapted the delivery of MaPa core parenting themes and skills to online/digital modalities as part of the COVID-19 Playful Parenting Emergency Response. The MaPa Parenting Tipsheets were translated to 12 major Philippine languages and disseminated on a wide scale, reaching an estimate of 300,000 service providers and family caregivers. MaPa webinars and radio segments conducted with partner stakeholders reached over 25,000 participants and viewers. These MaPa core messages are now being integrated in the national CCT programme via the online Family Development Sessions (eFDS) system, to be disseminated to a potential 4 million Filipino beneficiary households. 


There are four main objectives of the study:

  1. To monitor the delivery of the digital-hybrid MaPa programme in the government’s social cash transfer (CCT) programme across different regions in the Philippines, specifically in terms of reach, delivery format or modality, and implementation of key components (i.e.discussion of core principles, support for skills practice)
  2. To evaluate the feasibility, accessibility, relevance, and usefulness of the digital-hybrid MaPa programme and delivery channels from the perspective of the community service providers and the CCT beneficiary caregivers
  3. To evaluate the effects of the digital-hybrid MaPa modules on discipline practices, positive parenting, parenting stress, parental wellbeing, and attitude toward corporal punishment of a selected sample of caregivers (exposed to the digital-hybrid MaPa programme) and community service providers (trained in MaPa core principles)
  4. To document the process and identify good practices, facilitators, and barriers in stakeholder collaboration, dissemination, and scale-up of the MaPa program

Study Setting

The whole of the Philippines.

Study Significance and Impact

This study is the first of its kind to be tested in the Philippines. It will contribute to an understanding of how an evidence-based parenting intervention programme to prevent violence against children can be embedded in a national CCT system and disseminated in large scale in a LMIC context.