How to support a child and protect against violence
International Children's Day is celebrated on June 1. The holiday is associated with the end of the school year, the beginning of summer and the taste of children's freedom. However, where there is freedom, there must be special caution.
The history of Children's Day begins in 1925, when representatives of various countries first convened the "World Conference on the Welfare of Children" in Geneva. The purpose of the conference was to draw the attention of the world community to the problems that children may face and to the consequences that may occur if we do not respond to certain challenges in time. Yes, it was decided to celebrate Children's Day in all countries, a holiday that will draw attention every year to the fact that a child needs the care and support of adults, that only thanks to proper upbringing, conveying information to the child about his rights and responsibilities, society begins to educate conscious children who later become conscious adults. The tradition of celebrating International Children's Day on June 1 appeared in November 1949 thanks to the initiative of the International Democratic Federation of Women in Paris. The UN supported the initiative and singled out a special structure for the protection of the rights and interests of children - UNICEF. International Children's Day was first celebrated in 1950. For children, it is a holiday of joy and fun. But the main mission of the holiday is to call on the countries of the world, parents, teachers, international, governmental and non-governmental organizations to protect the rights and freedoms of children.
A tolerant and just society can exist only in conditions of mutual understanding between adults and children, in compliance with the protection of children's rights and freedoms.
Every member of society has rights. Since a child is a full member of society, he also has rights, and these rights are enshrined in the Constitution of Ukraine.
Today, Ukraine adheres to a number of international documents in the field of ensuring children's rights.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the main document that defines legal standards in the field of protection of children's rights. Every adult should know how to convey to a child, in accordance with his age, information about rights and responsibilities, how to support the child in order to avoid the consequences of violating his rights.
A child has the right to life; on freedom of thought and religion; for education, recreation and leisure; to protect against the exploitation of child labor; for protection from physical and psychological violence.
Regarding the latter, the most acute problem that a child can face is violence. Sometimes parents turn away from her. They hope that it is never
will not happen to their child, believe that they are raising their child correctly and that only good and fair people surround him/her. But, unfortunately, statistics show that both a child who has all the basic benefits and children from disadvantaged families can suffer from violence. This also applies to the educational and educational process, the age of the child, his environment, etc.
Violence against a child can manifest itself in various forms - physical violence, economic, psychological, sexual violence.
An effective tool for combating sexual violence and exploitation of children is the one ratified by Ukraine The Lanzarote Convention is a Council of Europe convention on the protection of children from sexual exploitation and sexual violence. The Lanzarote Convention is the first regional treaty specifically dedicated to the protection of children from sexual violence, which can occur, including at home and in the family.
Since it is best to solve the problem that was avoided, it is necessary to start not with "flight analysis", but with the correct launch of the board called "childhood protection".
Today, on the day of the holiday, we offer you to familiarize yourself with the TOP 7 tips on how to support a child in order to protect him from possible violence.
1. Talk to the child
Adults, who constantly talk to a child, mostly know the picture of his life - what happens in kindergarten, school, who are friends and who are enemies.
Talk to the child whenever you have the opportunity, ask questions, let the child do most of the talking, don't tell the story for him, just asking "yes" or "no." If the daily schedule of the day does not allow you to spend time talking, especially with older children, when the schedules of parents and children do not always coincide, use modern digital opportunities - family chat, correspondence on social networks, etc. It is not necessary to control every step of the child, but to know how the child spends the day is the duty of adults.
Constant conversations with the child will allow you to identify the smallest risks that may happen to the child and eliminate them at the beginning.
2. Trust the child
A child should know that adults trust him and that he can trust an adult. To build such a relationship, demonstrate not with words, but with
examples that you know how to keep secrets, that you will not raise a scandal for every little thing, but simply indicate how it would be better to do it.
"Even if you notice a child's deception, do not rush to punish and condemn him. First of all, you should think about the reasons for cheating, and they always exist. For example, a child is afraid of punishment, so he does not tell the truth, or he is ashamed to admit his mistakes, or he does not want to upset you. By understanding the child's feelings, it will be easier for you to establish trusting contact with him, calm him down and help him open up to you. You can start a conversation with the following words: "I see that you are upset/about something. Tell everything as it is, even if it's embarrassing." "I promise, we will not punish you, but we will help you understand the situation, tell me what happened." "If you really want something, tell us, we'll figure out how to get it together." "All your wishes are important and deserve attention, you can honestly tell us about them," advises child and family psychologist Antonina Oksanych.
3. Do not decorate the problem with "bows"
Talk directly to children about difficult situations that may happen to them. The child must distinguish a standard situation from a critical one and understand exactly what a problem has happened to him (sometimes children do not understand that something is wrong, wrong). This also applies to the problem of violence against children. Do not put "rose-colored glasses" on the child. Yes, the problem of violence against children exists in the world, in Ukraine, it can happen at school, on the street, in a social network. And the worst thing is that the offender is not always a stranger, a person from a close circle can also harm a child. Usually, such people enter into trust and systematically "prepare" the child for their crimes.
It is necessary to identify and tell about problems to adults in time. The child must understand that "she is not a toy."
4. The boundaries of the child's body
Talk to your child about sexual abuse as well. With older children, you can talk directly about the problem, tell with examples that a certain story happened, discuss whether it could have been avoided (the media often cover cases of violence against children, do not close your eyes, perceive them as situations that can be discussed calmly, without emotions, with a child). Younger children should clearly have information about the boundaries of the body - use the rule "Don't touch me here": no one has the right to touch the child in those places that are usually covered by underwear and they, in turn, also have no right to touch others in the same places (of course, we are not talking about the situation when you need to go to the doctor, etc.).
5. Blackmailing a child
Tell the children that they can start blackmailing her. The child should know that what offends him and is covered with the words "don't tell anyone" should be exposed immediately - tell parents, teachers, a trusted adult. The child should know that the adult will help stop the blackmail and supports. Explain that the longer a problem is silenced, the deeper it hurts.
6. Violence through the screen
Lack of information hygiene is a problem not only in our country, children tend not to distinguish content and, as a result, can become victims of violence through the screen.
Spend some time on the Internet together, browse shopping sites together, download games together, look at new toys, and with the elders - new gadgets. 15 minutes on the Internet with a child next to you will allow you to natively tell that there are "good" pages and there are "bad" ones, that there are criminals who can pretend to be good people. Teach your child to filter content.
7. Any problem can be solved
Repeat this phrase to the child every day, several times a day, like a mantra. The more often a child hears that "any problem can be solved", the less likely it is that he will find a problem in his head that cannot be solved.
If the problem has already occurred, you need to accept it, inform adults about its existence as soon as possible, find a solution and forget about the problem. Speak this algorithm to the child as well - so he will know not only the standard memorized phrase, but also a clear algorithm of action.
This year, the Council of Europe Office in Ukraine is launching a global campaign "Combating violence against children in Ukraine", which will focus on supporting Ukraine in strengthening its response to cases of sexual violence and exploitation of children, including in the digital environment, on the dissemination of child-friendly practices with with an emphasis on ensuring the rights of child victims and witnesses in criminal proceedings, and promoting children's rights in the digital environment. In more detail link.
A child has a legal right to a healthy, safe and secure childhood and adults must ensure this.
- Booklet "Learn about your rights in the digital environment"
- Video clip "Tell an adult you trust"
- Brochure "Parenting in the digital age»
- Video lesson 1 — Protecting children online
- Video lesson 2 — Sexual blackmail
- Video lesson 3 — sexting
- Video lesson 4 — Sex chat
- Video lesson 5 – Grooming
- Video lesson 6 — Images of a sexual nature used for revenge
The material was prepared as part of the Council of Europe campaign "Combating violence against children in Ukraine" based on the analysis of scientific and practical works of psychologists from different countries.
The content of this publication is entirely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Council of Europe.