Every year on 10 December, the world celebrates Human Rights Day, the very day when, in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Protect Children works every day to promote the realisation of children’s fundamental rights, so that this right could one day become reality, all around the world. We do extensive awareness and advocacy work nationally and internationally. In 2021, we have given 10 statements on various topics pertaining to the realization of the rights of the child. Our work is strongly based on international human rights law and the Finnish Action Plan for Non-Violent Childhoods (2020-2025).
Every single person has the fundamental right to grow up in a secure environment, free from violence and other inhumane treatment. Our organization’s primary goal is to protect all children from all forms of sexual violence.
Every child has a right to information, education and protection, which is what our Online Road Safety project is based on. Protect Children produces and publishes free materials that teach children important skills to stay safe in all environments. In our advocacy work, we particularly highlight the importance of teaching children digital safety skills at an early stage, as despite the fact that children are born into a highly digitalized society, they still need the active presence and guidance of adults in their digital daily lives. Children also have the right to freely express their views and be heard, and child participation is a fundamental part of the Online Road Safety project.
In addition to its positive impacts, the constant development of technology unfortunately also leads to greater challenges in preventing and combating sexual violence against children. The amount of child sexual abuse material distributed online has seen a significant increase. In our advocacy work, we have focused on the need for stronger consideration of the development of technology in the realisation of children’s rights. Legislation needs to be sustainable and future-proof so that the rights of the child can be safeguarded despite developments in technology. The aim of our ReDirection project (2020-2022) is to prevent online crimes of sexual violence against children, in particular the production, use and distribution of child sexual abuse material (CSAM). We take a multi-pronged approach in the protection of children from sexual violence, focusing not only on potential child victims, but also on (potential) offenders, as is the case with the ReDirection project.
We at Protect Children are strongly committed to supporting child victims and their families, and to bring forth their voices and wisdom, also in our advocacy work. In our statements, we have highlighted the rights of victims and families to compensation and appropriate psychological support and care. We arrange peer support groups for parents and guardians of children who have become victims of crimes of sexual violence. The strength of parents and guardians is fundamental in the recovery process of the child and of the entire family.
At Protect Children we will continue to do our utmost to ensure that no child is subjected to sexual violence which is every child’s fundamental right.