Uchi is a two years old orphan, living in Gbodjo in Benin, one of the poorest African countries.
His life was at risk because of the environmental conditions, extreme poverty and degradation while exposed to the worst possible infectious diseases.
We welcomed him into a hospitality centre for orphan and abandoned children, we fed him a daily meal of high protein and vitamin enriched flour which is helping him now to grow healthy.
Girls and boys are among weakest and vulnerable subjects and for this reason mostly exposed to risk of violence and abuses. Children victims of mistreatments and abuse will bring with them in health and adult life psychological, social and economic consequences of such violations.
In Italy we have opened help points inside the emergency department of some hospital so that women victim of violence can find immediate help and, if necessary, support to search a shelter where to stay with their children. Children witnessing domestic violence, if boys are at risk of becoming violent when grown up while girls identify with the mother.
We work to protect boys and girls in Italy and worldwide from these risks and promote their growth and development in a safe and protected environment.
To achieve this target we are committed in strengthening social networks and services for children and in contribution to the improvement of institutions welcoming them. In addition to direct involvement we are committed in research activities aimed to understand factors instigating to violence and therefore develop effective intervention models to face them. We try to raise knowledge of the problem, raise awareness of public opinion, urge institutions to act.
Against any type of abuse
The following are some of the actions we are taking to combat child abuse:
– we develop means for monitoring and reporting violations of children’s rights
– strengthen associations and networks involved in child protection
– establish helplines for children at risk
– provide psychosocial support and safe housing, recovery and reintegration programs for children victims of violence and abuse
– improve life conditions of children with special needs
– improve life conditions of children at risk: children separated from families or forced into living at the fringes of legality, child workers and migrants
– combat child labour, trafficking and sexual exploitation
– publicise policies for child protection and develop advocacy actions
– promote official birth registration .