World Day for Prevention of Child Abuse
1. To mark the ‘World Day for Declaration of the Convention on the Rights of Child’ and ‘World Day for Prevention of Child Abuse’, Children’s Fair was organised on 19th and 20th of November 2002 jointly by CUTS – Centre for Human Development, Chittorgarh and Save the Children (UK), Jaipur. 195 persons, including 83 girls and 76 boys from nine non-government organisations of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh states participated in the event.
1.1 The Children’s Fair was organised for, and planned as well as coordinated by the children, which were its key characteristics. Primary objective of the event was to serve as a platform of deliberation among the children for expression of their feelings and thoughts. Additionally, the event aimed at bringing together the various government and civil society organisations working on development concerns/issues of children to effectively comprehend the expectations, needs and feelings of children and carry forward well-argued view points as well as grassroots concerns on children’s development to the development community at large. Child rights and child abuse were major themes of the event. Besides, the children endeavoured to display their vision of the village in the coming ten years.
1.2 The event was organised on the backdrop of following inputs by children, such as,
the children wanted to meet children from other regions for cross-learning;
importance is not given to the views/opinions of children;
children need a platform to express their feelings and aspirations; &
children desired to know the development interventions of various government and civil society organisations to provide/create suitable/better environment/conditions for children.
1.3 On day one, the children expressed issues related to child abuse and discrimination against girl children through songs, role plays, posters, drawings, phad*, case studies etc. Sexual harassment/exploitation of girl children, child labour, gender discrimination, child marriage, domestic and non-domestic violence, and deprivation from education issues were mainly discussed by the children. Through painting/drawing exhibition and during deliberations, the children mentioned that: they need love, care and appropriate dignity; education and health of children should be given top priority; their feelings should be appreciated; social malpractice, such as, child marriage should be eradicated; child labour should be abolished; basic amenities should be available in all the rural areas; there should not be any gender discrimination; rights of children should be protected; sexual abuse of girl children should be stopped with cogent and concerted effort of the government and community; there should be effective participation and representation of children in each forum/committee engaged in development concerns of children. Among others, Mr. Pradeep Singh Mehta (Secretary General of CUTS) and Ms. Mini Bhaskar (Programme Officer of Save the Children, UK) graced the event.
1.4 Organisation of ‘question forum’ was the major activity of the second day. Mr. Ram Ray Bangad (officiating Collector/District Magistrate) and Swami Omanand Saraswati (eminent educationist, religious leaders, and philosopher) chaired the session. Representatives of electronic and print media were also present to give coverage of the event. Select questions asked by the children were as follows:
why does gender discrimination exist?
why are not the girl children allowed/permitted freedom of movement?
why do only women make fast in religious functions and not men?
why are girl children affected by sexual abuse and what actions are being taken or planned by government agencies to reduce the same?
why is child marriage still solemnized in villages and how can its incidence be decreased?
why are not there hand-pumps, schools and roads in the villages?
will the administrative officials, religious leaders, and media representatives cooperate and support the children if they take up/act for their own development?
1.4.1 The children also put up certain complaints, such as:
the teachers do not stay in the schools for the scheduled time; moreover, complaints against such incidences are not redressed by the appropriate authorities; and
education committees have been formed to monitor quality of education at local level, but, representation of children is missing in these committees.
1.5 Achievement and impact of the event are enumerated as follows:
Participating children became aware of the generic concerns of children and were informed about the rights of children;
Networking relationship between participating children as well as civil society organisations operating in different regions was established; and
A forum was developed for continued interaction between children, which would take up their cause, have their representation and carry forward the emerging issues to the development planners and implementers.
For more details, please contact:
Partha Das/Dhanna Singh Rawat
CUTS Centre for Human Development (CUTS-CHD)
Chittorgarh – 312 025
E-mail: email@example.com ; firstname.lastname@example.org
A two-day Baal Sammelan was Organised by CUTS’ Centre for Human Development in association with Save the Children, UK, North Central India (NCI) Office, Jaipur, at Chittorgarh on 19th and 20th November 2002. The Sammelan was organised on the occasion of the World Day Against Child Abuse on 19th November and the International Child Rights Convention Day on 20th November 2002.
The Baal Sammelan was organised to be a interactive forum for the children of the field areas of various partners of Save the Children, UK, and NCI Office, from Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. A total of 150 children participated in the Sammelan from the field areas of Urmul Trust, Urmul Seemant and Urmul Sethu, Bikaner; Ceocodecon, Tonk; SARA, Sikar; School for Desert Sciences, Jodhpur; CREATE, Ferozabad; Sangathin, Lucknow; and SARC, Benares, in addition to the children from the Chittorgarh and Bhilwara, CUTS.
The focus of the Sammelan was ‘Expression of your Views’ and was designed to be a programme organised, managed, compered and presented by the children, with only facilitation provided by the accompanying adults. The Sammelan also had an exhibition of children’s works, which was in various forms such as posters, small poems, speeches, etc.
The Sammelan was structured thus:
The first day had a brief inauguration session followed by series of programmes by the children from various fields on the broad themes of ‘Child Abuse’, ‘Child Rights’ and ‘Vision 2010 for Their Respective Villages’. The programmes varied from skits, poems, songs with deep meaning, street plays and so on. The second day had a mock parliament for children, where they would shoot questions on the broad theme vis-à-vis what is being done for them to a panel comprising of