Advocacy and Child Safeguarding

Advocacy: Making children’s voices count

SOS Children’s Villages is committed to ensuring the rights of all children, especially the rights of those who are often forgotten: children without parental care. We recognise that children and young people in alternative care should be supported to speak up about their experiences, their needs and their ideas. One strong element of our advocacy work is to empower them, to boost youth participation in national and international advocacy events and to ensure that their voices are heard.

SOS Children’s Villages of India speaks out for children’s rights at state and national level. It works with various stakeholders in influencing policies and legislation to improve the quality of care for children and family welfare systems.

  • Strategic collaborations
  • Partnerships with the government
  • Knowledge partner
  • Networking with peers

Joining forces for children in India

Forces’ for Children in India, which is a joint collaboration of six child-focused NGOs – World Vision, Save the Children, Terre des hommes (TDH), ChildFund, Plan India and SOS India. A task force of the collaboration was set up in April 2018, and its first meeting was held at SOS India on June 1 to develop a Terms of Reference (ToR). The ToR has been signed by the Heads of member organisations. The first action of the ToR was to develop a Child Rights Situational Analysis report for global and national advocacy. The draft report has been shared with all six NGOs.

Child safeguarding: Keeping children safe wherever they are!

Working with children on four key aspects – awareness, prevention, reporting and responding, we create strong vigilance systems which are supportive, respectful and trustworthy – during this reporting period, the focus was to foster greater trust amongst all stakeholders in raising concerns as soon as accurately possible. The thrust of the First Information Report (FIR) training was on Child Sexual Abuse CSA and preventing measures.

Similarly bolstering our commitment, we expanded the knowledge to vulnerable communities. Children can demonstrate remarkable resilience amid adversity, navigate complex environments and engage in self-protection, if they are oriented and supported for it. In four locations, a series of consultations with different stakeholders, both external and internal, were held to map various issues pertaining to child safeguarding. An orientation of child safeguarding was conducted subsequently – a total of 228 training and awareness sessions were held in which 5021 caregivers and 5965 children participated. Currently, child safeguarding strategy is being developed, which will be rolled out next year across all locations.

OUR CHILD SAFEGUARDING COMMITMENTS

  • We create a safe environment for children in all our programmes.
  • We do not tolerate any abusive behavior towards children, whether intentional or inadvertent, anywhere in our sphere of influence.
  • We promote child protection in the communities where we work.