Social Good

Why Keep Children Safe matters

jamaica #keepchildren safe child abuse unicef

As a new father myself I couldn’t be happier to have started consulting for UNICEF, beginning with the #KeepChildrenSafe campaign and yesterday’s Twitter chat, which delivered a respectable 16.3 million impressions.

#keepchildrensafe twitter chat jamaica

#KeepChildrenSafe has generated 17.9 million impressions since March, of which 16.3m came last night! Source: Keyhole via @DeikaMorrison

It wasn’t just the numbers but the level of discussion from those took part, from teens to influencers to even the Jamaica Constabulary Force and the Children’s Advocate herself, Diahaan Harrison – both actively replying to the questions posted by @unicefjamaica and to chat participants. And maybe my favourite: the father and his 12-year-old daughter who participated together.

Behind all this was strong networked advocacy driven by campaign partners Do Good Jamaica, Office of the Children’s Advocate, Jamaica Gleaner and TVJ.

This is just the start of the campaign coming at a good time the month before Child Month and with a new government to raise the swept-under-the-carpet issue of child abuse:

  • Only 1 in 10 adults report child abuse, despite knowing about it.
  • Despite that unwillingness to report, the Office of the Children’s Registry received close to 12,000 in 2014.
  • So if you multiply those two numbers = 120,000 if all cases were reported.
  • Talk, if that’s what cynics might dismiss it as wouldn’t be enough on its own. Yet step one is to break the silence on child abuse and the level of violence many Jamaican children are forced to grow up in.

    jamaica rass kassa pmi #keepchildrensafe

    Director Rass Kassa directing a short film for #KeepChildrenSafe. (Photo: Ross Sheil)

    Throughout this campaign we’ll be continuing to engage on social media, in the press and with a series of public forums led by partners like Peace Management Initiative and Eve for Life whose essential on-the-ground work, supported by UNICEF, does much to save and mend broken lives.

    #keepchildren safe unicef jamaica child abuse

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  • Unleash Our Potential – Youth Advocate
  • What would Jesus do? Street Pastors get the congregation onto the street
  • Building a counter-culture of peace
  • How grassroots Jamaica can ‘build back
  • Parenting lessons needed – ‘bad parents’ hurting youngsters in poor communities
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