Child Advocacy Centre opens in Linden

first_img…to cater for victims of child sexual abuseThe Social Protection Ministry, through the Child Care and Protection Agency (CCPA), has partnered with the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), Blossom Inc and the Linden Hospital Complex (LHC) to establish a “One Stop Centre” for vulnerable children in Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara- Berbice).Linden Mayor Waneka Arrindell cutting the ribbon to open the Centre, assisted by LHC Chief Executive Officer, Dr Farouk Riyasat and officials gathered at the launchThe Centre is established for children who are victims of sexual abuse.It will provide support for interviewing and after-care services. Similar centres are earmarked to be established throughput the regions of Guyana, to bring relief to vulnerable children and their families.Situated in a space set aside at the LHC, the Centre was officially launched on Tuesday in the presence of numerous officials.Speaking at the simple ceremony, Linden Mayor Waneka Arrindell expressed gratitude to the team, noting that it was a commendable effort.Deputy Director of Children Services, Fiona October, who also addressed the gathering, said that the process will have the involvement of other partners such as law enforcement, the prosecution and the health sector to record the child victim’s account of abuse.She said the process will require a forensic interviewer in a special room while the representatives from the key disciplines observe and listen to the interview in a different space.This will facilitate the child having to tell of the incident only once and thereafter commence the healing process and court support to see the case through the judicial system, October indicated.Regional Chairman Renis Morian congratulated the agencies as he encouraged them to move beyond a space, to establish a permanent building in the Region. Morian pointed out that some of the greatest crimes against children were committed in their homes, as he urged all to push to ensure children’s rights are protected.“We need to continue to push more to see more stringent laws enacted to protect our children. I love the space here and I want to encourage all working in this environment to really work assiduously to bring protection for our children…This is a good start, but I’m saying to the Ministry of Social Protection, the Regional Democratic Council, the hospital and every other agency represented here, we need to push the envelope beyond a space, we need a building…,” Morian emphasised.The space was officially declared open by the ceremonial cutting of a ribbon. (Utamu Belle)last_img

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