Preventing child abuse digitally: 'Sakshi' NGO begins online classes to train people 

This skill is critical to break through the barriers of denial, silence, shame and stigma surrounding child sexual abuse.

Published: 16th July 2020 08:28 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th July 2020 08:28 AM   |  A+A-

Smita Bharti, NGO Sakshi; webinar involving students of St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, in the Rakshin Project

By Express News Service

Right since the initial days of the lockdown, a number of domestic violence cases spiked up in India. In an attempt to curb the violence, Sakshi NGO is training a number of individuals to prevent such hardships in a series of online sessions.

This initiative to prevent gender based violence focuses on child sexual abuse.

“Our project is called The Rakshin Project, and is focused on building an informed young adult in every house, who is committed and skillbuilt to prevent harm.

A ‘Rakshin’ is someone who recognises sexually abusive behaviour, has the language to call it out, knows how to deescalate a situation, secure the child and report the abuse,” says Smita Bharti, Executive Director of NGO Sakshi, in a conversation with The New Indian Express.

“We train every Rakshin in conducting difficult conversations with their family and community.

This skill is critical to break through the barriers of denial, silence, shame and stigma surrounding child sexual abuse.

It equips the Rakshin to build allies who would speak up in solidarity.

The Rakshin is provided access and information on how to reach out to the designated expertise for on-ground action in instances of abuse,” Bharti further adds.

Bharti informs that The Rakshin Project has reached out to over 100 colleges, and 10,000 Rakshins/college students and their families, across 39 cities spread over 10 states and two UTs in India to prevent child sexual abuse.


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