Awareness: First step towards the change by Surbhi Agarwal

Awareness: First step towards the change

My awareness sessions dealt with the adults from age group 20years to 50years, total 16 people including my family members.

EXPERIENCE and LEARNING

With the younger group.
My friends and colleagues constituted this age group. They were quite aware about the child abuse and some of them have faced it as well, so could relate to it on the deeper level. They were unaware about the extent of child abuse, cyber bullying and the variable effects. They recalled the cases they have seen, witnessed and couldn’t recognize at those times that it is a part of child abuse.

Challenges:
People relate it mainly to sexual abuse, and ignore all other types that can harm children.
✓To stop child abuse, one has to be aware that how to detect it. This is something most of us don’t know, even I didn’t know this before joining KSCF.
✓Minor cases are many times ignored, but such cases can equally affect the child.
✓Even if the person detects that there is something wrong with a child, they don’t interface because of the attitude of the parents of the child. Correct way to approach the child and recognize the abuser is very important.

Conclusion:
It is very important to be sensitive and loving towards the child and willingness should be there to help. For this, proper knowledge and attitude should be there. Without these, the child will remain unhelped.

With the older group.
This group was constituted by relatives. Though they were reluctant, but later they understood the importance of discussing about it openly for the better future of children, especially those who can’t get help from others. Unawareness was at peak, beating children and giving them early exposure to the outside world at a early childhood was prevalent at that time and there is a fine line between the two.

Challenges:
✓ Early stage of awareness couldn’t let them gather all the knowledge at once.
✓ Slow learning and unawareness about the modern parenting.
✓ Old beliefs of them related to education, parenting and abuse.
✓ Normalizing the incidents of child abuse in their heads was a big problem. Because if they won’t see this as a problem, they won’t be willing to come up with a solution.
✓ Blaming exposure to technology was seen as a problem.
✓ Neglecting the facts and numbers and not believing that such a high number of children are getting effected.

Conclusion:
The older group of people (above 40 years) don’t get mingled easily with children and find it difficult to approach and counsel them, therefore detecting signs of abuse becomes difficult as well.
Sensitizing this age group is difficult, thus will be required more sessions to get aware.

Overall, overall sensitization session was overwhelming and personal connectivity between the attendees and I was a big advantage. Trust factor is a big thing, it made my work easy. They listened to me very patiently and became ready to reach out to such children whenever and however they can. Though, atleast 1 more session is required to completely aware them about how they can become the saviour.

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