22 January 2014: UNICEF, EU, Save the Children and Plan International Join Forces with Tanzania to End Violence against Children
Dar es Salaam, 22 January 2014 – The Government of Tanzania, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the European Union (EU) Delegation to Tanzania, Save the Children International (SCI) and Plan International (PLAN) launched today a joint child protection initiative to end violence against children in Tanzania.
UNICEF, Plan International (PLAN) and Save the Children International (SCI) will implement the initiative funded by the EU to the tune of 4 billion TSH (1.8 million EUR), in Kisarawe, Kibaha, and Shinyanga Rural districts on the mainland and West district of Zanzibar. SCI, PLAN, in partnership with local authorities and civil society organizations will take the lead at the LGA level. UNICEF will take the lead at the national level with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare on the Mainland and the Ministry of Empowerment, Social Welfare, Youth, Women and Children Development in Zanzibar.
“This partnership is a significant step forward to strengthen child protection systems in order to address violence against children in the country, as well as an opportunity to foster a stronger alliance for children among the EU, the host government and agencies working closely with children – UNICEF, Plan International, and Save the Children”, said Dr. Jama Gulaid, the UNICEF Representative in Tanzania.
“Protecting children’s rights and welfare is not only a moral imperative, it is also a fundamental development objective. The European Union is honored to contribute to this multi-stakeholder initiative which will go a long way in supporting comprehensive and integrated services to curb violence against children”, said Eric Beaume, Head of Cooperation of the European Union Delegation to Tanzania.
Tanzania was the first country in Africa to undertake a comprehensive survey on prevalence levels of sexual, physical and emotional violence against girls and boys. The Tanzania Violence Against Children Study, released by the Government and UNICEF in 2011, reveals that one in three girls and one in seven boys in Tanzania experiences sexual violence before the age of eighteen. In addition, rates of physical violence are alarmingly high, nearly three out of four boys and girls experience being punched, whipped or kicked during their childhood, while one quarter of all children are emotionally abused. The majority of children do not report their experience, few seek services, and even fewer actually receive any care, treatment or support. The initiative supported by the joint-project is a follow-up to the Violence Against Children Study undertaken in 2009 that will help the country move from research to action.
The child protection project has created synergies with existing action and framework in the country. The project supports the National plan of Action for the Prevention and Response to Violence Against Children (2013-2016) as well as the National Costed Plan of Action for Most Vulnerable Children (2013-2017). In the former, the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare committed to expanding the child protection system to 30 districts by 2016. The support from the EU is a significant contribution towards achieving this goal.
The initiative will support the establishment of child protection systems to effectively identify, prevent and respond to all forms of violence against children, especially girls. At the subnational level, the action will complement existing interventions focusing on fighting child labour and establishing safe schools in Zanzibar with SCI and will build on community structures strengthened under the Water and Sanitation Programme in Kisarawe with Plan International, both carried out with EU support.
The project will support national authorities to build district-based child protection systems to prevent and respond to all forms of violence against children, particularly girls. It will focus on children and their families, promoting a protective community environment and safe schooling while building the capacity of frontline duty bearers. The programme aims to achieve a long-term, sustainable system for identification, prevention, response and rehabilitation of children by embedding the system into the Local Government Authorities (LGAs) and community structures using the results generated to advocate for a regular budget allocation for child protection at the district level. At national level, the programme will strengthen the capacity of the Departments of Social Welfare on the mainland and Zanzibar to provide technical support to LGAs on child protection system strengthening.
Note to the Editor:
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about UNICEF and its work in Tanzania visit: www.unicef.org/tanzania ; www.facebook.com/UNICEFTanzania
About the European Union:
The European Union (EU) is a unique economic and political partnership between 28 democratic European countries founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, equality, the rule of law and human rights. Over more than fifty years we have created a zone of peace, democracy, stability and prosperity on our continent while maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedoms. The EU looks to share its values and achievements with neighboring countries and peoples and those farther afield. The EU has a network of 140 Delegations across the world. The European Union promotes and protects children rights and does so through a range of different modalities and instruments. Children’s welfare is at the core of the European Union Strategy for Human Rights, trade negotiations, development cooperation and humanitarian aid as well as EU political dialogue with partner countries. For more information about the EU and its work on children’s rights visit: http://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/tanzania/index_en.htm;
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