BREAK THE SILENCE
The U.S. State Department 2017 Human Rights Report states that child abuse and
sexual violence towards children is persistent and widespread in Liberia.
This is one of the devastating legacies of the civil war.
Awareness, Education, and Prevention
Orphan Relief and Rescue and our implementation partners work diligently to educate children to understand the dangers of trafficking and sexual abuse, to know what the signs are, how these can be avoided, and how to get help.
This is done through the use of a flipchart designed for children that teaches four key messages:
- I am valuable and so are you
- Safety is my right
- My body belongs to me
- I can get help
Children are taught potential approaches and manipulation that perpetrators use and to stay safe. They are also given resources to get help if they, or a friend, are a victim of abuse. With our community partner organizations, we will be reaching thousands of children through this program.
Our goal is to break the silence surrounding physical and sexual abuse and trafficking by creating informed and empowered children.
Orphan Relief and Rescue now funds and supports the Liberian Government’s National Anti-Trafficking and Sexual Abuse Prevention Hotline in partnership with World Hope International. This is a free nationwide crisis hotline to get help with suspected or known cases of human trafficking, sexual abuse, assault, or physical abuse. Calling the hotline connects a person to an advocate who can refer the case to the appropriate authorities and, when appropriate, connect the person to a social worker for follow-up. So far, 2, 551 phones calls have been made to the hotline.
The Hotline is a strategic element of the National Pathway to Combat Trafficking and is mentioned in the 2017 U.S. State Department Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report.
Our Break the Silence program has educated and empowered over 8,000 children to know that they can say no to sexual and physical abuse. We have trained 155 caregivers and government workers in our anti-abuse workshop and equipped them to expand the Break the Silence program to a larger number of children.
Through this program children know their rights to their bodies, and that they are valuable and protected. These concepts are new to many, and are changing the course of the future for countless children in Liberia. We are working hard to reach as many children as we can with this message, while being the only source of funding for the National Hotline.