3rd Technical Consultation held in Bhutan
Message by Marta Santos Pais, UN SRSG VaC to SAIEVAC 3rd TC
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- 3rd Technical Consultation – Bhutan 2013
- 4th Governing Board Meeting – Bhutan 2013
- Children’s Preparatory Meeting
SAIEVAC organizing its 3rd Technical Consultation
South Asia Initiative to End Violence Against Children (SAIEVAC) is theSAARC Apex Body for children dealing with violence against children at the regional level. SAIEVAC Secretariat is organizing its 3rd Technical Consultation on Eliminating HarmfulPractices affecting Children Based onTradition, Culture, Religion and Superstition from 24th to 27th September 2013, Thimphu, Bhutan.
Despite legislation which discourages the use of such practices, which very often target young women and girls, they are rarely perceived as harmful but in reality result in death, disability, compromised health and psychological trauma for many children around the world. Increasingly gaining the attention of the wider global community, harmful practices may be either traditional or newly emerging but in general usually have cultural, social or religious underpinnings. While all violations of children’s rights can legitimately be described as “harmful practices”, those based upon tradition, culture, religion or superstition are especially challenging as they are perpetrated or actively condoned by parents or influential leaders within the community and often enjoy continued support from the state and the wider community. This consultation is in keeping with the recommendations of the 3rd Governing Board Meeting of SAIEVAC held in Colombo, Sri Lanka on 30th May 2012. The consultation is being hosted by the National Commission for Women and Children (NCWC), Royal Government of Bhutan and organized and showcased by the SAIEVAC Secretariat, supported by South Asia Coordinating Group on Action against Violence against Children (SACG).
Participants of the consultation will share experiences and lessons learned, identify gaps and opportunities for eliminating harmful practices affecting children based on tradition, culture, religion and superstition in South Asia.
A highlight of the Technical Consultation will be the Children’s Preparatory Meeting, whereby Child Governing Board members and child representatives from South Asia will participate and present their own views and recommendations for protection from harmful practices affecting them. This will be initiated through a National Children’s Consultation process prior to the actual consultation.
SAIEVAC’s 4th Governing Board Meeting
Co-inciding with the conclusion of the 3rd Technical Consultation on Eliminating Harmful Practices affecting Children based on Tradition, Culture, Religion and Superstition, SAIEVAC will conduct its 4th Governing Board Meeting from 28th to 29th September in Thimphu, Bhutan. The meeting will look at the recommendations made by the 3rd Governing Board Meeting held in Colombo, Sri Lanka including its outcomes or achievements made so far. As usual, one of the main aganda of the meeting is to make a set of new recommendations for SAIEVAC’s future plan of action.
Follow–up Meeting of The Trilateral Convention of Stakeholders on Missing Child Alert System
A Follow–up Meeting of the Trilateral Convention of Stakeholders on Missing Child Alert System is being jointly organized by SAIEVAC Regional Secretariat (SRS) and Plan Asia Regional Office, hosted by the National Commission for Women and Children, SAIEVAC Mechanism in Bhutan from 23-25 September 2013.
The Missing Child Alert project initiated by Plan International led to the Tri-lateral Convention of Stakeholders jointly organized by SAIEVAC and Plan International in February 2013. Wide range of stakeholders such as senior representatives of the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of women and Child Development, the Ministry of Telecommunications, the National Informatics Centre of Govt. of India, the SAARC Law, SAIEVAC, UNICEF, IOM, INGOS, Civil Society organizations and organizations of survivors from Bangladesh, India and Nepal. The convention concluded with three key recommendations:
- To form a high level Regional Technical Advisory Group (TAG);
- To select decentralized model of technology for an alert system, which will be built upon all existing systems; and
- To invest in convergence and cooperation within key Ministries at national and regional level.
Following this, a series of activities were undertaken by SAIEVAC and Plan international to realize the recommendations made by the Tri-lateral Convention. In view of the many opportunities presented by this initiative, it is found vital to form a high level Regional Technical Advisory Group (TAG) having representations from three Governments and relevant expert agencies.
Among other objectives, this regional level follow-up meeting of the Tri-lateral Convention aims to expedite the process of the formation of TAG. The meeting will also offer an opportunity to develop a road map of MCA activities.