RNP, UK’s National Crime Agency hold workshop on child protection
Rwanda National Police in Partnership with UK based National Crime Agency (NCA) are holding a two-day workshop on prevention of child abuse that will focus on mechanisms to prevent and fight the vice.
TheÂ workshop opening was presided over by the Minister of Gender and Family Promotion, Oda Gasinzigwa, and graced by the Ministers of Internal Security, Sheikh Mussa Fazil Harerimana, Justice, Johnston Busigye , the Inspector General of Police Emmanuel K Gasana, the High Commissioner of UK to Rwanda, William Gelling and the Prosecutor General, Richard Muhumuza.
The workshop that is organized under the theme, â€œProtect Children from Abuse; Together we can,â€will focus onÂ Â raising awareness of child protection and abuse matters, understanding forms of child abuse, introducingÂ the UKâ€™s International Child Protection Certificate (ICPC) in Rwanda, behaviour of abusers and evidence required to prosecute offenders.
Speaking at the opening of the workshop, Minister Gasinzigwa pointed out that, â€œAll children have a right to protection from abuse and promotion of their welfare wherever they are. Rwanda has demonstrated strong commitment towards meeting its obligations in realizing the rights of children through various laws, policies and initiatives.â€
She added that, â€œToday, children from orphanages are being integrated in families while community based mechanisms have been put in place to prevent unnecessary separation of children from their families. Similarly, Rwandaâ€™s integrated approach against any form of Gender based violence and child abuse led to the establishment of Isange One Stop Centers across the country where victims can seek services.â€
Currently, there 23 operational Isange One Stop Centers in different districts that provide medical, psychological and counseling services and according to RNP, the centers will be scaled up to all the 30 districts across the country before the end of this year.
In his remarks, the British High Commissioner, Gelling said, â€œThe threat to children is real and it has never been more urgent to act together against it. Technology is enriching peopleâ€™s lives and changing the ways we interact with each other. It offers endless benefits and possibilities to our children.â€
He added that, â€œChildhood is being transformed and this is the first generation to grow up with unlimited access to information; with the ability to communicate and connect with people they have never even met. We are meant to be the guardians of children yet none of us are prepared for the power that technology bestows upon us. Nor are we prepared for the risks.â€
The workshop is attended by several representatives of security organs in the country, officials from UN agencies, members of the Civil Society Organizations, schools and officials from different institutions in the justice sector.
Participants at the workshop will share best practices and learn from expertsâ€™ experiences in ending child abuse. They will hold interactive exchanges on types of child abuse like human trafficking, child neglect, sex exploitation and online child exploitation among others.
The International Liaison Officer of the UK based National Crime Agency, David Ward, pointed out that delegates attending the workshop are to utilize the experiences and diverse knowledge in raising awareness of the risks of child abuse, acquire more knowledge of the legislation and the requirements to respond to child abuse cases.