Childhood without fear and violence | EUNewsletter

Childhood without fear and violence

2 December 2010
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Childhood without fear and violenceThe results of an assessment on the child protection situation in Armenia, done within the framework of the EU funded “Unite for Children, Save Futures” project, were presented on 10 September in Yerevan. The goal of the three-year project is to identify, address and prevent child protection problems. The first assessments were conducted in the regions of Tavush, Lori and Gegharkunik during April and May 2010.
“The results showed that violence against children was observed in the three regions, but the present system is not always productive in responding to such cases in time”, marked Irina Saghoyan, the country director of “Save the Children” in Armenia, which implements the project. She added that violence against children is widespread in Armenian society as an acceptable form of ensuring discipline.
The assessment further showed that children from all marzes experience violence in different settings: at home, in institutions, schools and even on the streets. The most common forms of violence against children are domestic physical and psychological abuse. Most people understand physical violence against children, but parents are often unaware that exploiting children economically through forced work is a violation of children’s rights as well. Difficult economic and social conditions in families, increase of divorces, alcohol and drug addiction were mentioned as motivations for violence. Invalid children and children with special needs proved to be particularly vulnerable to violent incidents, because families are inclined to hide those children from society. According to the experts, social indifference and the idea that a child belongs to his/her parents who are allowed to do anything they want to, in addition to lack of awareness may also lead to violence. The assessment showed that most children and parents do not know how to report a case of abuse or which relevant services are available.

Save the Children Armenia has a hotline for violence against children, 0800-61-111, which already operates in Armenia. Departments on protection of children’s rights also function in the municipality of Yerevan and all regional administrations. Experts suggest, however, stronger cooperation among agencies responsible for child and family welfare in the regions.

The assessment was done in the framework of a project funded by European Union and the Open Society Institute. The next phase of the project foresees efforts to raise awareness regarding child protection with the help of mass media, as well as practical training of teachers and parents.

Childhood without fear and violence

Childhood without fear and violenceThe results of an assessment on the child protection situation in Armenia, done within the framework of the EU funded “Unite for Children, Save Futures” project, were presented on 10 September in Yerevan. The goal of the three-year project is to identify, address and prevent child protection problems. The first assessments were conducted in the regions of Tavush, Lori and Gegharkunik during April and May 2010. “The results showed that violence against children was observed in the three regions, but the present system is not always productive in responding to such cases in time”, marked Irina Saghoyan, the country director of "Save the Children" in Armenia, which implements the project. She added that violence against children is widespread in Armenian society as an acceptable form of ensuring discipline. The assessment further showed that children from all marzes experience violence in different settings: at home, in institutions, schools and even on the streets. The most common forms of violence against children are domestic physical and psychological abuse. Most people understand physical violence against children, but parents are often unaware that exploiting children economically through forced work is a violation of children’s rights as well. Difficult economic and social conditions in families, increase of divorces, alcohol and drug addiction were mentioned as motivations for violence. Invalid children and children with special needs proved to be particularly vulnerable to violent incidents, because families are inclined to hide those children from society. According to the experts, social indifference and the idea that a child belongs to his/her parents who are allowed to do anything they want to, in addition to lack of awareness may also lead to violence. The assessment showed that most children and parents do not know how to report a case of abuse or which relevant services are available. Save the Children Armenia has a hotline for violence against children, 0800-61-111, which already operates in Armenia. Departments on protection of children’s rights also function in the municipality of Yerevan and all regional administrations. Experts suggest, however, stronger cooperation among agencies responsible for child and family welfare in the regions. The assessment was done in the framework of a project funded by European Union and the Open Society Institute. The next phase of the project foresees efforts to raise awareness regarding child protection with the help of mass media, as well as practical training of teachers and parents.