Child Matters Update: Increasing Awareness

Child abuse is the nation’s single most important public health challenge affecting communities, business, justice, health, education, and social services. It is estimated that one million people are either currently suffering abuse or living with the long term effects of past child abuse. This affects all of us one way or another.

Child Matters encourages citizens to:

  • Increase awareness of the issue and create an environment where people are talking about child abuse.
  • Provide people in a position to help with the skills to be able to do so.
  • Create a society where child abuse is not tolerated and where everyone takes responsibility for keeping our children safe.

How about adding a new year’s resolution to do one thing that will make a difference to a child?

Raise awareness about child abuse

Child abuse is everyones problem and it affects each and every one of us. It’s not just up to the authorities to stop child abuse. We all have a responsibility and a part to play.

To make this happen we need everyone to know what child abuse is, how big the problem is and that its not just ‘someone else’s problem’; that they are part of the solution.

How you can help raise awareness of child abuse:

  • Talk about the issue. The more we talk about it, the less taboo it becomes. So start those conversations and lets get the subject out of the shadows.
  • ‘Like’, contribute, and share content on the Child Matters Facebook page. Facebook provides an awesome opportunity to reach a huge number of people who we may otherwise not get a chance to get this issue in front of.
  • Join in with others doing initiatives focused on child abuse, e.g. Buddy Day or Link Hands Against Child Abuse. Or perhaps you could start something yourself…
  • Purchase a few extra copies of our resources like How Can I Tell? and make sure community groups, kindergartens, schools, churches etc that you know have a copy.

Lobby for changes in our legislation to protect children

Now is the perfect time to get the message to the Government about what you think is important in protecting our children. The Government currently has a Green Paper for vulnerable children and they are wanting feedback from us all as New Zealanders about some of the hard questions around vulnerabwle children and child abuse.

How you can lobby for changes:

  • Make a submission on the Green Paper. To make it easier, we have developed a template submission that you can print-off, sign, and send in. Or, if you would like to write your own submission we have developed some key points you might like to include. All submissions need to be made by 28 February 2012, so time is ticking on this opportunity.

Source: Child Matters Newsletter