Children as Active in the Political, Social, Cultural and economic spheres of society
Life skills for children and youth
Bonani from HOPE Mabutsane reports: “1500 Peer-educators, children and youth in schools have participated in life skills sessions to prevent teenage pregnancy, HIV and sexual abuse. Youth join youth clubs of different kinds. Peer educators in schools are now leading the discussions on issues related to HIV/AIDS and Gender based Violence to their peers”.
With assistance from PCI and REPSSI Journey of Life program, we conducted life skills sessions, especially for vulnerable groups in the community. These members of families and communities were reflecting on the development they want to create, starting with identifying community challenges and needs and then mapping out community solutions. Through specialised life skills sessions with vulnerable women, adolescents and youth have been able to bring out in the open serious issues that otherwise are not openly discussed. We have had very fruitful and objective discussions.
It comes out clear that these trainings have given the participants opportunities to discuss child neglect, child abuse, rape, poor parent - child communication, corporal punishment, food insecurity and poverty, child labour, inter-generational sex. It comes out clear that this result in teen age pregnancies, adolescents dropping out of school, limited access to education including Integrated Early Child Development activities, alcohol and drug abuse, Gender Based Violence, intimate partner violence and poor ART adherence. There were a lot to elaborate plans and concrete actions for. Some of the cases of child neglect and abuse including sexual abuse were reported to social workers and the police that resulted in conviction”.
Sam from Child Aid Ghanzi narrates: “We conducted life skills sessions under the Journey of Life program to identify vulnerable adolescent & Youth in Kabakae Primary, Ghanzi Primary, Kgaphamadi Primary School and Ghanzi Brigade. This was conducted in collaboration with the Guidance and Counselling Teachers in different schools. A total of 336 students participated in several sessions. Children living in difficult situations were identified and referred to S&CD and all have been assisted. Department of Social Services provides food basket, for school materials and in Selebi-Phikwe for a scholarship to preschool. Child Aid area leader are following up”.
Registration of children’s births
In some communities we find a number of families who have not made sure to register the birth of their children. Without a birth certificate the children cannot enroll in school, get access to health services or any other government services.
From Child Aid Ghanzi, Sam reports: "We have been working with the Department of Civil and National Registration in both Ghanzi and Charles hill. We have partnered for transport to reach out to the far away settlements in this district. Then people from there also started to approach us in the Child Aid center to get assistance to register. Child Aid Ghanzi has supported 106 people with birth registration and 1 with death registration. Around 21 persons have managed to get both the birth certificates and identity cards. The site also supported 21 who have received their birth certificates.”