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Events :: Достъп :: BFPA is a part of a national platform for preventing violence against children –“Childhood without violence” Coalition

BFPA is a part of a national platform for preventing violence against children –“Childhood without violence” Coalition

PanelSofia, September 12, 2018

On September 12th at the Quill Literary club in Sofia was announced the creation of a large scale national platform to combat the violence against children – “Childhood without violence” Coalition. 19 civil society organizations and experts who have worked for years for prevention of violence against children and its consequences, united for joint actions, provoked by the lack of advancement in state policies and practices, the lack of shared understanding in society and the deepening of the problem in the last years. The members of the “Childhood without violence” Coalition aim for the Coalition to become a major platform working for zero tolerance for violence against children which includes members from all aspects of society – civil society organizations, parents and citizens, institutions, business, media. 
The platform envisages advocacy work with institutions for legislative changes and ensuring sustainable public services and measures for protecting children from violence, conducting researches, developing instruments for identifying and alerting for children at risk, which are to be used by different specialists – social workers, teachers, medical doctors and health workers, policemen, etc.

BannerThe Coalition aims also to help parents and professionals working with children, by supporting them to be the best parents and professionals by specially developed programs and trainings and by developing the resource platform endviolence.bg, which contains useful information for preventing, identifying and overcoming the implications of violence as well as the existing services in the country. Next year “Childhood without violence” envisages to conduct a widespread informational campaign on improving the understanding of violence against children and its consequences for the children and for society as a whole.
The Coalition for the moment consists of Association Roditeli, Association Demetra, Bulgarian Family Planning Association, Bulgarian Center for Non-for-Profit Law, Social Activities and Practices Institute, National Network for Children, Know-How Centre for Alternative Childcare, Association "Child and Space", Association Children and Youth, Centre for Inclusive Education, GERT Foundation,
"Animus Association" Foundation, Worldwide Orphans Foundation, For Our Children Foundation, Tulip Foundation, Applied Research and Communications Fund, LEAP Foundation, assoc. Dr. Aleksei Pamporov and assoc. Dr. VElina Todorova. The first official corporate partner of the initiative is “Nova Broadcasting Group”.
Famous people also joined in to support the platform – Iordanka Fandukova (mayor of Sofia), Maya Manolova (ombudsman), the actors Yoanna Bukovska and Ivailo Zahariev, the writer Georgi Gospodinov, the singer Poli Genova – they participated in filming a series of short videos, appealing to rethink the violence against children and its consequences. The videos were presented at the press-conference, and in September 2018 they will be aired in social networks, conventional and online media. The first videos are already uploaded and can be seen in Facebook on the “Childhood without violence” Coalition page.
Violence against children (incl. from children against children) exists in all social strata, and there are no exceptions on the base of ethnicity, social status, religion, etc. It has serious consequences and loss for society, since the children who have suffered from violence are much more likely to: get into drug abuse, suffer from depression and other psychological diseases, come in conflict with the law, have learning problems; have worsened psychological and physical development. On a global scale the economic loss from consequences from violence against children are estimated at 3 to 8% from the total global gross domestic product.
In Bulgaria the statistics for the cases of violence against children are fragmented and incomplete. The whole picture is missing, which can give realistic idea of what is happening and the full scale of the problem. On the national telephone line, maintained by "Animus Association" Foundation and the State agency for Child Protection, 11 000 calls from children were received last year. 700 from those were about cases of violence. In contradiction with observations from practice and feedback from the experts and field work of the organizations from the Coalition, there is a decrease of submitted signals and cases opened based on them by the Child Protection Departments in 2017 compared to previous years. In comparison with 2015 and 2016 when the submitted signals are approx. 3700 and 3200 respectively, and the opened cases based on them are 957 and 681 respectively, in 2017 1282 signals were submitted and 382 cases were opened. For comparison, in 2007 nearly 4693 cases of violence against children were identified as 3929 of them were registered.

The “Childhood without violence” Coalition counts on initiative’s media partners – Nova Television, Net Info, BNR, “Jenata dnes” magazine, “Mama Ninja” and expects more media to support the campaign.

 

 

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‘My Body, My Rights’ – Successes and Challenges

Health mediators from Montana, Bulgaria, and their work in state of emergency
Montana, March-May 2020

Peter Cvetanov, Sonya Rumenova and Valya Alexandrova are health mediators in Montana Municipality. The three of them as a team are implementing activities part of the project of Bulgarian Family Planning and Sexual Health Association (BFPA) – ‘My Body, My Rights’ (2018–2021). In addition to their municipality, pilot work is being done in two other locations in Bulgaria: Yambol and Sofia. The project is implemented in partnership with organizations from Serbia and Romania, with the coordinating role of International Planned Parenthood Federation and is supported by the programme for social responsible business of the company MSD via their campaign ‘MSD for Mothers’. Main goal of the initiative is to improve the conditions for ensuring quality of family planning services for vulnerable communities and to build capacity and civil responsibility within the communities.
Sonya in a health mediator from 2013. She graduated economics, married with two children: a boy and a girl: ‘Several years ago Roma women from the neighborhood didn’t see doctors for prophylactics. Part of them were not insured, others simply were living with their prejudices and fears. We had two obstetrics-gynecologists as part of the Bulgarian-swiss cooperation program ZOV. They were visiting the health center in the neighborhood according to schedule. Then we decided to form local women’s group for self support, where initially timidly, but afterwards more confidently we started talking about examinations, contraception, family planning, prevention of sexually transmitted infections... The women from the group started little by little to shake off their fears.’ They just made progress and the activities on project ended. Only  mediators remained in the health center. And then for them new opportunity arose via the project ‘My Body, My Rights’. ‘It gave us the opportunity to continue just on time. The group for self support is developing; the health center in the neighborhood is alive again.’ Sonya succeeded to motivate a poor mother of nine children for IUD insertion. Before that she tried many times, but without any success. ‘I think that she was mostly afraid of being damaged by IUD. Now I know for sure that my long-term working with this woman was not in vain.”

 
Learning Action Partnership: Efforts for Guaranteed Sustainability

Sofia, February 12, 2020

The first for 2020 meeting of the Learning Action Partnership took place in Sofia on February 12, 2020. The agenda included review of activities done on project up to the moment, fixing of concrete future activities and defining small working groups for the different strategic directions.
Representatives of organizations and institutions who participated shared their working plans and the possibility of inclusion of other LAP members in joint activities. Part of the feedback was connected with the increase of fake news, including on priorities of the Partnership. The atmosphere of the event was businesslike, but with extremely well expressed solidarity and good collaboration feeling. In the debates during the meeting important actual topics were covered, such as increasing media and digital literacy of children and challenges, which we are meeting in our work with teachers with long practice on certain age and with burnout. Forming network of children and young people with innovative model of managing was discussed, which will aim decreasing the aggression of children under residential care. How to focus our work so that the efforts put to have guaranteed sustainability; science and research approach and regional and national level partnerships; the need to work together to change the environment – were among topics discussed during the event.

 
Most significant change: Documenting stories

Dolna Banya, January 24-26, 2020

On January 26-28 BFPA organized a meeting of the teams working on the project „My body, my rights” from Sofia, Yambol and Montana. Representatives of the three locations shared their experiences from the implemented field activities. We discussed problems which health mediators, self-help group members and their partners face and paid special attention on possible ways and strategies for solving. Participants put accent on good practices that had been identified up to the moment. It was the perfect time to watch and discuss several videos, showing the fieldwork as well as image “memes” with messages, which show benefits of family planning.
Participants gave feedback also for the freshly prepared Manual for self-support groups and for the Health application for mobile devices, which will be useful in the future work on the project and after its ending. Divided into groups by locations the participants from Sofia, Yambol and Montana worked on possible ways of documenting stories for the most significant change of people’s lives as result of the work of project teams and health specialists.

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Events :: Достъп :: BFPA is a part of a national platform for preventing violence against children –“Childhood without violence” Coalition