In India, a child is sexually abused every 15 minutes. Thus, it is a problem that cannot be ignored. About 85% of the offenders are known to the victim & only 25% of the victims speak about their plight. Since it is not possible to keep an eye on the children all the time, creating awareness on the issue is the need of the hour. This project aims to fulfill this by undertaking awareness meetings/gatherings with community members, youth and school children in its rural and urban work areas.
During our periodic interactions with community women, they voiced their concerns with regard to safety & security of their children while they were out at work. Women further added that they often have to choose between safety of their children and earning their wages. Parents of sexually abused children are scared to tell anyone due to fear of being shamed in society. The trauma of sexual abuse in children often impacts the children through life; they become guilty, fearful, lonely & worried.
Laws alone are not enough to curb child sexual abuse. The solution lies in creating widespread awareness of the issue by educating community members, youth, teachers & school children. The process in which the children are groomed, lured & victimized is conveyed through audio-visual and visual aids. Children are enlightened about safe & unsafe touch and to get away from an unsafe situation & seek help from a trusted adult. The project thus helps children to be saved from this brutality & trauma.
We have already launched the project by orienting over 100 teachers & youth from the work area. Over the year, 2000 participants covering school children, teachers & youth will be better informed about identifying & preventing child abuse. Parents & teachers will be competent to appropriately respond & help a child when she/he discloses an instance of sexual abuse. The children exposed to awareness through this project will grow into healthy adults without any ill effect of sexual abuse.