The Mother and Child-Friendly Seal for Responsible Business links service providers with business entities to help push forward systematic change in Sri Lanka’s tea industry, to the benefit of families, children and tea businesses. The initiative is implemented by The Centre for Child Rights and Business in collaboration with Save the Children.

The tea sector is a vital lifeline for Sri Lanka’s economy. It has a registered workforce of about 230,000, of whom 67% are women. But major child rights challenges exist including child labour, violence against women and lack of maternity protection among other issues. These challenges are driven by high poverty rates in plantations, the impact of the pandemic and lack of awareness and collective action to tackle these issues. Together with our Seal initiative and Tea Alliance and advisory committee members, we are committed to transforming Sri Lanka’s tea industry into one that is sustainable, family-friendly and child-rights focused.

Our History

From 2017, Save the Children began investing in initiatives to support mothers and children in tea plantation estates, and forged partnerships with other organisations such as Margaret Cargill Foundation and GSK to broaden the scope and support for children and families.

In the same year, Save the Children introduced the Mother and Child-Friendly Plantations programme, which led to the development of a child protection policy that has been signed by eight plantation companies to date. This programme ultimately paved the way towards the development of a “Mother and Child-Friendly Seal for Responsible Business”, which is developed and managed by The Centre for Child Rights and Business in Sri Lanka (‘The Centre’), a social enterprise founded by Save the Children that works with businesses to promote and strengthen child rights in supply chains. Read more about The Centre here.

Our Mission
    The Seal initiative aims to improve the wellbeing of women and children in Sri Lanka’s tea sector by:
  • Strengthening commitment and capacity of business entities to create a family-friendly tea supply chain, in which children can enjoy their human rights.
  • Encouraging business entities in the tea supply chain to make sustainable and meaningful investments in wellbeing initiatives targeting children and women in plantation communities.
  • Enhancing public private partnerships between government agencies and tea business entities, to improve the key service deliveries such as education, health and social protection.
  • Creating added value and market differentiators for the Sri Lankan tea industry by demonstrating its transformation towards a family-friendly supply chain, therefore promote the long-term sustainability of the tea industry.
Our Organisational Structure

The Mother and Child-Friendly Seal for Responsible Business is a collaborative initiative between The Centre for Child Rights and Business Sri Lanka, Save the Children and other key stakeholders.

The governance structure of the Seal initiative is comprised of the Steering Committee, the Seal Unit and the Advisory Committee