‘IN­SPIRED: Ako Para Sa Bata’

Business World - - Opinion - MARIA VIC­TO­RIA RUFINO

The 10th in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ence Ako Para Sa Bata (Nov. 19 and 20, SMX Con­ven­tion Cen­ter Manila) has the theme “IN­SPIRED,” an acro­nym that means: Im­ple­men­ta­tion and en­force­ment of law, Norms and val­ues, Safe en­vi­ron­ments, Par­ent and care­giver sup­port, In­come and eco­nomic strength­en­ing, Re­sponse and sup­port ser­vices, Ed­u­ca­tion and life skills, and De­liv­ery sys­tems.

“End­ing vi­o­lence against chil­dren should be a pri­or­ity. Stud­ies have shown that vi­o­lence against chil­dren and ado­les­cents, the most vul­ner­a­ble mem­bers of so­ci­ety, leads to a wide range of health and so­cial prob­lems,” re­marked Dr. Ber­nadette J. Madrid, ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor, Child Pro­tec­tion Net­work (CPN) and con­fer­ence pres­i­dent APSB in Manila. IN­SPIRED is an ev­i­dence-based re­source for ev­ery­one com­mit­ted to pre­vent­ing and re­spond­ing to vi­o­lence against chil­dren. In­clud­ing De­liv­ery Sys­tems high­lights the multi-sec­toral co­or­di­na­tion, mon­i­tor­ing, and eval­u­a­tion sys­tems as cross-cut­ting ac­tiv­i­ties that con­nect and strengthen the seven strate­gies in the orig­i­nal pack­age.”

Co-pre­sen­ters are UNICEF and the Coun­cil for the Wel­fare of Chil­dren, the Gov­ern­ment Part­ner.

“The Con­fer­ence will fea­ture Ev­i­dence for Bet­ter Lives Study, an in­te­grated re­search, im­pact and ca­pac­ity-build­ing pro­gram led by the Univer­sity of Cam­bridge, and sup­ported by the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion, the Global Part­ner­ship to End Vi­o­lence against chil­dren and UNICEF, Dr. Madrid said.

“The study aims to gen­er­ate high-qual­ity ev­i­dence on pre­vent­ing vi­o­lence against chil­dren and sup­port­ing chil­dren grow­ing up in the con­text of ad­ver­sity so that they achieve their full po­ten­tial.”

Based on eight medi­um­sized cities in low-in­come and mid­dle-in­come coun­tries across the world, the study in­cludes Valen­zuela, Bu­la­can, Philip­pines. There will be a Pol­icy Work­shop spon­sored by Con­suelo Foun­da­tion.

Dr. San­dra S. Her­nan­dez, Con­fer­ence chair said, “IN­SPIRED aims to help coun­tries achieve the 2030 Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Goal (SDG) tar­gets that ad­dress vi­o­lence against chil­dren in­clud­ing those that ad­dress poverty, health, gen­der equal­ity, ed­u­ca­tion, safe en­vi­ron­ments, and jus­tice.”

Among the in­ter­na­tional ex­perts fea­tured are Dr. Alexan­der Butchart from the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion in Geneva, Switzer­land, Pro­fes­sor Manuel Eis­ner from the Univer­sity of Cam­bridge and Su­san Walker of the Univer­sity of the West Indies in Ja­maica.

The Child Pro­tec­tion Net­work Foun­da­tion is an ac­cred­ited Con­tin­u­ing Pro­fes­sional De­vel­op­ment (CPD) units provider for so­cial work­ers and physi­cians.

Atty. Ka­t­rina Le­garda, Direc­tor, Na­tional Net­work of Women and Child Pro­tec­tion Units, Ways and Means Com­mit­tee chair ex­plained, “Con­tin­u­ous train­ing is a way of en­sur­ing that ev­ery abused woman and child is treated with com­pas­sion and com­pe­tence they truly de­serve. We started AKPB con­fer­ence 10 years ago with only a few hun­dred del­e­gates. Last year, we reached al­most 2,000!

“We in­vite physi­cians, so­cial work­ers, po­lice, teach­ers, guid­ance coun­selors, psy­chi­a­trists, psy­chol­o­gists, judges, lawyers, NGO work­ers, par­ents, lo­cal gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials, and other front lin­ers in the field of women and chil­dren pro­tec­tion work to join us and pledge AKO PARA SA BATA.

“We are end­ing the year with 105 Women and Child Pro­tec­tion (WCPUs) and Vi­o­lence against Women and Chil­dren (VAWC) Desks in 50 prov­inces and 10 in­de­pen­dent cities in the Philip­pines, the pro­ceeds of the an­nual AKO PARA SA BATA Con­fer­ence sup­port the es­tab­lish­ment of more WCPUs pro­vid­ing free di­rect ser­vices to based chil­dren and ado­les­cents – 78,000 and count­ing,” she stated.

The Child Pro­tec­tion Net­work Foun­da­tion (CPN) is com­posed of pro­fes­sion­als and in­di­vid­u­als who are ded­i­cated to en­sur­ing that all chil­dren in the Philip­pines and through­out Asia are pro­tected by the many faces of abuse.

The Board of Trustees: Jus­tice Ameur­fina A. Me­len­cio-Her­rera, Chair Emer­i­tus; David Bradley, Chair; Irene Mar­tel-Fran­cisco, pres­i­dent.

The Trustees: Lizzy S. Ra­zon, Dr. El­iz­a­beth P. Mel­chor, Mia V. Bor­romeo, Julio D. Sy, Jr., Johnny L. Ve­lasquez, William B. Go; Mons Ro­mulo, Ka­rina Con­stantino-David, Renna Hechanova-An­ge­les, Bri­tish Amb. Daniel Robert Pruce.

Mis­sion: The Asian Cen­ter for Child Pro­tec­tion in col­lab­o­ra­tion with all Child Pro­tec­tion Units shall serve ev­ery abused child with com­pas­sion and com­pe­tence en­sur­ing that all abused chil­dren at risk are safe healthy and de­vel­op­ing to the best of their po­ten­tial within a nur­tur­ing fam­ily en­vi­ron­ment.

Here are some facts and statis­tics pro­vided by CPN:

Sex­u­ally abused chil­dren are typ­i­cally 13 to 15 years old. High risk age group is 16-17 years old. Ado­les­cents are im­pul­sive and vul­ner­a­ble to peer pres­sure. WCPU data show that sex­ual vi­o­lence takes place dur­ing dat­ing in this age group.

In the WCPUs, girl-chil­dren seek­ing ser­vices for sex­ual abuse far out­num­ber boy-chil­dren. Males are more likely than fe­males to ex­pe­ri­ence sex­ual vi­o­lence at home, in school, the com­mu­nity, work­place, and dat­ing. Sex­ual vi­o­lence among boys is un­der­re­ported.

The role of the school in child pro­tec­tion is very im­por­tant, Chil­dren reach out to teach­ers and guid­ance coun­selors. Gap­pro­pri­ate life skills and per­sonal safety lessons in­te­grated in the school cur­ric­ula — i.e. Safe Schools for Teens project — is a key strat­egy in de­vel­op­ing chil­dren’s skills in pro­tect­ing them­selves from vi­o­lence.

Sex­ual vi­o­lence against chil­dren most of­ten oc­curs in the home, the com­mu­nity and dur­ing dat­ing. Neigh­bors and boyfriends are the most com­mon per­pe­tra­tors of sex­ual vi­o­lence.

The lack of su­per­vi­sion, sin­gle­headed house­holds, ab­sent par­ents in­crease the risk of sex­ual vi­o­lence against chil­dren in the home. Risky on­line be­hav­ior and lack of su­per­vi­sion when us­ing the in­ter­net ex­pose chil­dren to on­line so­lic­i­ta­tion.

Phys­i­cal vi­o­lence oc­curs in the forms of vi­o­lent dis­ci­pline and non-dis­ci­plinary con­text. Cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment or phys­i­cal abuse is ac­cepted as a norm by Filipinos.

The top three per­pe­tra­tors are fa­thers, neigh­bors and strangers.

Con­grat­u­la­tions to the dy­namic or­ga­niz­ers and gen­er­ous spon­sors of APSB on its 10th year!

(For in­for­ma­tion: please call the sec­re­tar­iat (02) 404-3954 or e-mail akoparasabat­a­con­fer­enec@gmail.com web­site: www. child­pro­tec­tion­netork.org)

MARIA VIC­TO­RIA RUFINO is an artist, writer and busi­ness­woman. She is pres­i­dent and ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer of Mav­er­ick Pro­duc­tions. mavrufino @gmail.com

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.