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Ongoing projects :: The ability to change

THE ABILITY TO CHANGE

OAK logoThe project “The Ability to Change” (2019-2021) is a two-year project implemented by the Bulgarian Family Planning and Sexual Health Association (BFPA) with the financial support of the OAK Foundation.

It is a logical extension of a previous project of BFPA “The Art to Inform” – 2013 - 2018. 
The project aims to contribute for eradication of all forms of sexual exploitation of children and adolescents in a moment when Bulgaria is with the highest perceived prevalence of all forms of such exploitation among the countries in Central and Eastern Europe. The project strives to change public attitudes and understanding and to attribute to “zero” tolerance in cases of child sexual exploitation. Additionally, it promotes pro-active, well-coordinated partnership approaches between different stakeholders and sectors in order to improve the implementation of the existing policy and legislative framework. The expected outcomes include strengthening the capacity of the Learning Action Partnership (LAP) and its members (LAP is an interdisciplinary network, consisted of governmental institutions, NGOs and academia, created under “The Art to Inform” project) and extending the functioning of the LAP as a resource “hub” and coordination unit of the efforts of the state institutions and the civil society sector to combat sexual exploitation of children and youth in Bulgaria. The project will use innovative approaches (e.g. story telling) to broaden understanding of the causes for the sexual exploitation of children and youth and to change societal norms and behavior in the Bulgarian society that increase the risks.  Specific attention will be given to topics like violence and addressing harmful norms and stereotypes.
By mobilizing all relevant supporters, such as NGOs working with children, youth organizations, parent’s organizations, state institutions and agencies, education institutions and authorities, business organizations and media, the project will try to decrease the vulnerability of the environment for all children in the country. Special focus of all activities will be given to most vulnerable groups: those from poor and marginalized communities, children with disabilities, migrant children, etc.

 

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Latest news

My Body, My Rights: Meeting of the Teams from Montana, Sofia and Yambol

Dolna Banya, September 2-4, 2020

Meeting of the teams on the project ‘My Body, My Rights’, supported by the prohgamme for socially responsible business “MSD for Mothers” took place in Dolna Banya on September 2-4, 2020. Special guests during the event were the Executive Director of ‘St. Sofia’ First OB Hospital Dr. Gergana Kolarova and the coordinator of BFPA in Pleven Dr. Krasimir Romanov. The priceless opportunity to have a direct dialog with Dr. Kolarova was highly appreciated by the team in Sofia and gave them the possibility to adjust the field efforts and optimize the collaboration with the hospital in the field of family planning.
Topics of the discussions during the three-day meeting were: what examinations to be done during the pregnancy and what is doing the gynecologist in the different stages; what are the benefits from health insurances; how much does it cost and how to recover health insurance rights; the benefits of visualization for understanding the information. Short educational films, developed to help the work at local level, were presented.
The work during the three days with health mediators and other colleagues working on the field from Montana, Sofia and Yambol included discussing the progress currently made and future activities trill the project end.
In the crisis months from the beginning of the year two tenth graders from Yambol were close to drop out from school due to the death of their parents, but the project team supported them and the boys will finish their secondary education. Two of the girls, trained on the project this year will be studying pedagogy in Veliko Tarnovo University.

 
The Learning action partnership was introduced to Safenet’s Cyber Scout Programme

Sofia, August 24, 2020

“I’m a 15-year old boy, in the ninth grade. Recently I met a girl in the social networks. After chatting a few days in Skype, we turned on cameras, send saucy pictures…. Now it transpires the girl is not a girl at all, I was recorded and being blackmailed, for money, for more pictures, otherwise the recordings will be made widely public. What do I do to get out of this situation?”
Another case:
“I’m in the sixth grade. A classmate who is a Facebook friend of our history teacher downloaded her picture and made her a professional profile in a porn site. What do I do, how do I react?”
The two cases are just a small part of the one-day training on the Cyber Scout programme for internet safety and online security for the members of the Learning action partnership (LAP). We talked about online bullying, online sexual exploitation, about the ways we should react, what rules apply, what is allowed and effective… We review different cases – from a threat from a pedophile regarding the security of a child to an innocent at first exchange between friends which escalates to online harassment that can have serious and long-term consequences for the victim’s life and mentality.

 
Capacity building in the fields of communication and advocacy

Dolna Banya, August 20-22, 2020

For three days – from August 20 to 22, 2020 BFPA’s team and Board together with representatives of key partners of the Association gathered at a outside-the-box work meeting in Dolna Banya. The public relations and civic law spepcialists Diana Damyanova and Ivana Murdjeva shared with the participants important accents of their professional expertise which are significant for better understanding the public environment as well as for communicating our messages.
The goal of the event was to analyze the needs of our target groups and of the environment we work in, bearing in mind the challenges for the NGO sector and the specificities in communicating with different audiences in order to be more successful when working in ”our” niche – health prevention, family planning, sexual and reproductive health. A short historical overview of the legislative environment and key normative documents was made.

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Ongoing projects :: The ability to change