Various groups participated in a series of workshops on Child Rights and the Child Protection Protocol this week.
The workshops were facilitated by the Ministry of Health, and Social Development in collaboration with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Department for International Development (DFID).
Stakeholders included leaders of youth/children related organisations, youth and children leaders in churches, pastors and heads of faith based organisations, as well as members of the media.
A key part of the workshop was the understanding of the Child Protection Protocol, which is a systematic guideline for coordinated actions in child abuse/neglect prevention, reporting, investigation and management. The workshops provided the stakeholders with training that will result in increased awareness among workshop participants on their role in safeguarding the Territory’s children.
The Protocol was signed on 1 October 2014, and gives the Social Development Department the legal mandate for childcare and protection. The workshops were described as important, because although the Social Development Department has the legal mandate, the other stakeholders will also be required to play critical support roles in this area.
The protocol offers guidance to the agencies and professionals involved in treating cases of child abuse.