Eight in 10 young people across the archipelago have experienced some form of violence in their lifetime. It may be in the form of physical and psychological violence, sexual violence, and bullying. Research further revealed that violence usually begins at home.
These are just few of the findings of the pioneering nationwide study on violence against children in the country.
Launched in 2016, the study also unveiled that the most common case of violence at home is corporal punishment. This is a clear violation of children’s rights—an unacceptable situation—which must be remedied urgently, no matter what the costs are.
Save the Children, an independent children’s organization, opposes all forms of violence against children.
In the country, the organization works with government, NGOs, and its corporate partners to protect children from violence and conflict. Through influencing laws and state policies, Save the Children ensures that children are free from harm. It also urges the Philippine Congress to pass a law that would protect children from physical and humiliating punishment.
It also encourages parents, caregivers, and teachers to use a positive and non-violent approach in disciplining children. In effect, the organization conducts Positive Discipline in Everyday Parenting (PDEP) and Positive Discipline in Everyday Teaching (PDET) trainings all over the country. Save the Children also improves the knowledge, skills and attitudes of service providers, schools, and NGOs to enable them to protect children in emergency and non-emergency contexts.
Save the Children also delivers programs for Filipino children which gives them better access to quality education and healthcare services. It is also on the forefront of supporting children during emergencies while also educating communities on disaster preparedness.
With its several years in humanitarian response, Save the Children has established itself as an expert in providing life-saving assistance to children and families affected by disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons, disease outbreaks, and conflict. Save the Children is especially concerned with how conflict impacts children’s mental and emotional well-being. Children exposed to such violence need care and support.
During Marawi siege in 2017, Save the Children was among many organizations which provided education, protection, hygiene, and psychosocial support for Marawi’s children. In fact, the organization distributed 3,000 back-to-school kits to displaced children and teacher learning kits to facilitate learning. To accommodate the surge of enrolled displaced children, it has set up 25 Temporary Learning Spaces in 14 host schools, which can accommodate about 45 children each. Each space is equipped with learning kits and teaching aids.
Moreover, the organization distributed 3,000 hygiene kits for school-age children.
Long record of service
Save the Children started its first program in 1982 on Guimaras Island in Western Visayas, reaching out to impoverished children and families with health, education, and livelihood projects that benefited over 3,000 children.
Later on, it expanded to new areas like Ilocos Norte and Metro Manila in partnership with government agencies and organizations like UNICEF to support children growing up in the poorest and most challenging circumstances.
From this initial start nearly 40 years ago, Save the Children has supported children throughout the Philippines—from the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo, to Bohol earthquake, and the many tropical storms and typhoons such as Ondoy and Yolanda.
In 2012, it reached over 1.9 million Filipino children, and directly impacted the lives of 560,000 children.
Save the Children also empowers indigenous children by publishing, translating, and distributing age-appropriate and culturally-sensitive books for children in various Filipino languages. It has also documented indigenous songs, stories and games.
It envisions a world where every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. However, none of these efforts will endure without support from the public.
Hopefully, these efforts will bring us closer to achieving a future that is free from violence.
To help, visit www.savethechildren.org.ph