Fight Against Child Abuse
It’s the month of April and also Child Abuse Prevention month all over the world.
It is a time for communities and families to come together to raise awareness, and empower people to play a role in making every child have a safe childhood away from violence and any form of abuse because it is their right!
Ideally, Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention should be recognized every day as abuse is very present in our society and it has long-term effects on its victims, especially children. Some of the consequences of child abuse are depression, developmental delays, low self-esteem, withdrawal, fear, and distrust, among many others.
Child Abuse is way more than what people think, it is not just child sexual abuse, abuse can be physical, and emotional. We see cases where parents fail to provide their children’s basic needs. These needs are necessities of life such as housing, food, clothing, and education. This is NEGLECT, and it is a very common form of Child Abuse.
According to blountkids.org, 1 out of 10 children are sexually abused before the age of 18, and 60 percent of those abused are done by trusted friends and family members. Many children do not say it when they are abused, it might be because they are scared, or probably the abuser had told them they will be killed if they tell anyone. So what are the signs that a child is being abused?
The sudden change in the attitude of the child, like a happy child, suddenly starts to withdraw.
They do not want to be left alone with a certain individual.
Playing with his/her private part.
Displaying seductive behavior with friends or caregivers.
Abused kids start to have difficulty in school, they lack concentration which leads to a drop in their grades.
How can you contribute to child abuse prevention?
Join or create outreach programs, specifically meant for raising awareness. Some resources and activities help in identifying abuse. We encourage communities to raise awareness, sensitize and support families with strategies to prevent child abuse.
If you see something, say something! If you have concerns or suspect a case of Child Abuse around you, you can contact your local police or identify any specialist organization close to you, and share your concerns or suspicions.
Lagos state has set up The Domestic and Sexual Violence Response (DSVRT) team, they can be contacted anonymously by dialing *6820# or by calling 0813-796-0048
Child Protection Unit can be contacted on 0907-733-3426.