Students from NMIMS Bangalore as part of their social internship program with Faith Foundation conducted a survey around their Koramangala campus area and surveyed a group of 62 people ranging from age 18 to 55 about their views about Child Sex Abuse (CSA). These are some findings from the local survey which will surely amaze you.
Are girls or boys more prone to sexual abuse?
When asked which gender is more prone to this heinous crime, 75% said that it is female gender. It’s a myth that a girl child is more prone to abuse but the facts available in the public domain could give many of those respondents a shock. According to official statistics from a survey (Source – http://www.childlineindia.org.in/pdf/MWCD-Child-Abuse-Report.pdf) done in 2007, as high as 53% of victims of sexual abuse are male children. Could it be that the perpetrators know there is no caution from parents or caretakers when it comes to the safety of boys?
Who are those perpetrators?
We share an earnest bond with our relatives and friends. We share the most important things in our lives with them; celebrate the happy and sad times together. So, we always think that children are safe with them and that is what the perception of people when asked about their child safety. A majority said that its strangers who are a threat to a child’s innocence which is again a myth. The 2007 survey* results indicates that our children are at more risk with the relatives and/or friends. Around 90% of the cases of child sex abuse reported are from the close and distant family and mere 10% from the strangers. These numbers show the grim reality and it’s a call for action to protect the children from these known strangers.
Are our children safe?
When asked if the children around them are safe or not, then most of the survey respondents said that “THEY ARE NOT SAFE”.
This graph shows that around 55% feel that their children are not safe. Most of the survey respondents however mentioned that they will report to the police if they come across an abuser.
As we know prevention is better than cure, there was a general consensus that children should be taught and made ready to face these situations. But in case it has already happened, according to people – talking to the child or taking him/her to the counsellor would be the best option.
More survey details are available in the presentation file uploaded on Faith Foundation’s Linkedin page
The role of NGO’s in reducing and/or eliminating Child Sex Abuse
This small survey has provided great insights on the current level of awareness among general public on the subject of Child Sex Abuse. Some of the notes as written by a few survey participants are included below:
- “Lack of an open environment and also the mindset plus parent’s ability to communicate with kids regarding these issues”
- “Basic education on a good/bad touch is not given properly in the fear of polluting the kid’s brain”
- “Mental health issues, not aware of what is right or wrong. No people to talk to when faced with such a situation”
- “Awareness leads to prevention”
- “I think in our society such issues are focussed on educating the girls about this; high time it changed and focus should be rather on educating the male section”
This leads us to think that people need a powerful backing in terms of an authority or an institution to go to when they come across situations like these. The children have to be educated about body parts, about the safe and unsafe touch. The parents have to be trained on how to talk to their own child instead of taking help from a counsellor. There should be more awareness about this cause and the channels that could be used for spreading awareness can be social media and newspapers.
~ Written by Chandni Puri, with contributions from Palak Gaba, Richa Sinha, Sumit Pandharikar & Susmitha Patnaik, students from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Bangalore as part of their We Care Internship program with Faith Foundation in February 2016.
Faith Foundation (www.wefightabuse.org) is a Registered Trust based in Bangalore that fights against Child Sex Abuse. The organization provides empowerment to children, teenagers and adults via tailored workshops and seminars.
Udyam, the Social Responsibility Committee of NMIMS Bangalore (www.nmimsbengaluru.org) organises various events and initiatives to sensitise the students about social issues prevalent in the society.
We Care is a three-week long flagship internship where Udyam places the students of the first year PGDM course with various NGOs to use their managerial skills and help in the causes of the NGOs.