SAIEVAC believes that violence includes all forms of physical or mental violence, injury and abuse, neglect and negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse. This definition covers exposure of children to violence in all settings including in their home, communities, schools, institutions, workplaces, and as well in development and emergency settings. Violence is also understood to occur not only between adults and children but also between children.
SAIEVAC also strongly takes into account Gender aspects of violence such as the different risks and consequences of violence for boys and girls. All children within the jurisdiction of SAIEVAC member States regardless of their sex, race, colour, language, religion, caste, class, disability or other status, national or social origin, political or other opinion should be protected from all forms of violence and discrimination.
SAIEVAC’s vision is that all children, girls and boys, throughout South Asia enjoy their right to an environment free from all forms of violence, abuse, exploitation, neglect and discrimination
- To ensure the realization of children’s rights as stated in the UNCRC and its Optional Protocols
- To prevent and respond to all forms of neglect, abuse, exploitation and violence against children in all settings
- To promote the adoption, implementation, and monitoring of integrated national strategies with adequate budgets and resource allocation to prevent and protect children from violence and ensure response
- To reinforce regional cooperation to end violence against children in South Asia
SAIEVAC’s aims to prevent and respond to all forms of neglect, abuse, exploitation and violence against children through a comprehensive child protection system at the regional and national level where governments, civil society and children are empowered to share experience, formalize linkages and reinforce cooperation to end violence against children.
By 2015, SAIEVAC will have undertaken 13 strategic steps towards ending violence against children:
Step 1.Reinforce REGIONAL COOPERATION
Share experiences and good practices and provide mutual assistance among members to end violence throughout the South Asian Region
Step 2.Develop A NATIONAL STRATEGY
Develop and implement at country level a comprehensive national strategy, policy, or plan of action to end violence against children
Step 3.Develop and enforce LEGISLATIVE MEASURES
Mature and put into practice legislative measures to prevent, prohibit and eliminate all forms of violence against children and assure their alignment with UNCRC and other international and regional instruments
Step 4. PREVENTION
Address violence root causes and focus on it’s prevention giving consideration to immediate risks and protective factors.
Step 5. DATA COLLECTION
Develop and implement a systematic national research and data collection system on violence against children. Based on generated evidences, members will take effective action, allocate resources to end violence against children and measure the progress throughout the years.
Step 6.PROFESSIONAL TRAINING AND LEARNING
Build the capacity of all professionals who work with or for children to improve prevention, detection and response to violence against children.
Step 7.CHILD CARE STANDARDS
Develop standards for all caregivers and for alternative care arrangements. Assure that institutions providing care, education and protection to the child are bound to regulations and monitored by an independent body
Develop a safe, well-publicized, confidential, accessible and child-friendly reporting systems. Guarantee that children, as well as their representatives, can report violence against children and make sure that institutions in contact with children investigate allegations quickly and fully.
Step 9.REFERRAL MECHANISM
Define clear procedures for the referral of child victims of violence and the modalities for inter-agency cooperation concerning the assessment and follow-up of each particular victim.
Step 10. RECOVERY, REHABILITATION and SOCIAL REINTEGRATION
Implement measures that promote physical and psychological recovery and rehabilitation of child victims as well as witnesses of violence and related families. Make sure action is taken without delay and in an environment that fosters children’s health, self- respect and dignity.
Step 11.THE JUSTICE SYSTEM
Apply judicial systems that pursue the best interests of the child and respect the rights of the child including the child’s right to protection from violence
Step 12.EDUCATION AND AWARENESS RAISING
Reach out adults and children through public information and media campaign, educate and raise awareness on child rights and protection , breakdown misconceptions and change societal behaviour.
Step 13. CHILD AND CIVIL SOCIETY PARTICIPATION
Support the meaningful and active participation as well as decision making process of civil society, children, and young people to prevent and monitor violence against children.
The Kathmandu Commitment to Action
for Ending Violence Against Children
SAIEVAC as an SAARC apex body will continue to strengthen its institutional linkages with the regional cooperation mechanisms in its mission to end violence against children in South Asia.
SAIEVAC and the SACG therefore make this Commitment to Action by putting forth the following recommendations.
1. We the members of the South Asia Initiative for Ending Violence against Children (SAIEVAC) commit to ensuring heightened attention to ending violence against children and simultaneously ensuring adequate focus and promotion of the well-being of women, children and youth in the South Asian Region as laid forth in the Social Charter of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and in line with the recommendations presented in the UN Study on Violence Against Children (2006).
2. We the members of the South Asia Initiative for Ending Violence against Children (SAIEVAC) commit to promoting institutional mechanisms that building linkages and synergies with the SAARC processes so as to achieve the objective of region-wide consensus on social action for realizing the rights of the child and the goals set for them within the framework of the survival, development and protection strategy, addressed during the SAARC Ministerial Conferences on Children.
3. We the members of the South Asia Initiative for Ending Violence against Children (SAIEVAC)commit to strengthening regional cooperation and coordination between governments, bilateral agencies, UN-agencies, INGO/NGOs, networks, regional judiciary forums, media, the corporate sector, academia, women, children and young people to address and implement recommendations from the UN Study on Violence Against Children (2006) and additional recommendations from global, regional, ministerial, and local studies and reports to end violence against women, children and youth in South Asia, specifically recognizing and acting on the key issues for the region (ANNEX 1) which include child marriage, violence, child trafficking, and sexual abuse and exploitation.
4. We the members of the South Asia Initiative for Ending Violence against Children (SAIEVAC) commit to involve children and youth, strengthen and support child-led organizations and ensure children and youth’s participation in decision-making on all matters that affect their lives.