The School Reach Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Program
The Program empowers school communities to raise awareness, dispel myths and speak out against CSA in their schools and communities.
About Your Organization
Sexual Offences Awareness & Victims Rehabilitation Initiative (SOAR Initiative)
Nigeria, CT, Abuja
Country where this project is creating social impact
Nigeria, CT, Federal Capital Territory (FCT)
Is your organization a
Non‐profit / NGO / Citizen sector organization
Your role in Education
The type of school(s) your solution is affiliated with
How long has your organization been operating?
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Select the stage that best applies to your solution
Growth (your pilot is up and running, and starting to expand)
How long has your solution been in operation?
Operating for 1‐5 years
The Need: What problem are you trying to solve?
A thick culture of silence exists in Nigeria regarding CSA. Victims are stigmatised, labelled as spoilt goods and accused of complicity, especially when force is not used. They are therefore pressured to keep quiet for fear of rejection and antagonism by peers . The implications for school going children include: ridicle and agression from school mates, exposure to high risk sexual behaviour, lack of concentration in school, falling grades and eventual drop out. Even more worrisome are incidences of CSA that occur in schools which are supposed to provide an enabling environment for children but end up achieving the very opposite for victims.
The Solution: What is your solution? Be specific!
The School Reach CSA Prevention Program empowers primary and secondary school communities to raise awareness about the incidence, prevalence and perpetration of CSA. It further enables the students empathise with victims encourage disclosures and provide support for victims. It does this by championing children as a major part of the solution rather than just mere bystanders in that it trains them as peer educators to reach other children in and out of school with CSA information. It also takes into consideration the social and emotional development of victims by providing access to appropriate support services.
The Model: Walk us through a specific example of how your solution makes a difference; include your primary activities
• A sensitisation talk is conducted in the school to raise awareness about CSA and adult survivors share experiences to enable students understand the trauma of the abuse and stigmatisation.
• School prefects and students selected from already existing school clubs are trained as peer educators and taught skills to reach other children, in and out of school, with peer education on CSA and adolescent sexual rights and violence.
• Parents are then sensitised and trained.
• Trainings are also held for school counsellors and teachers to enable them identify victims by understanding the signs and symptoms they exhibit, empathise and counsel the victims appropriately
• Service providers within the community are then identified to help provide pro-bono medico-legal aid, especially to indigent victims.
The Marketplace: Who are your peers and competitors? Identify others also working to address the needs you are and what differentiates you from them. What challenges could these players pose to your success or growth?
The generality of organisations in the field concentrate mainly on HIV/AIDS or adolescent sexual & reproductive health. Unfortunately, no other organisation focuses on CSA in the North Central Region of Nigeria where the program is running.
Now that you have thought out your entry, help us pitch it.
Define your company, program, service, or product in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
The Program empowers schools to raise awareness about the prevalence of CSA, empathise with victims and encourage them to speak out.
Identify what is innovative about your solution in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
Students are trained to empathise with victims of CSA and actively contribute in ensuring its prevention in schools.
This Entry is about (Issues)
What has been the impact of your solution to date?
SOAR Initiative has reached 5 primary and 4 secondary schools in about a year since it took off with this program. 468 Parents and teaching staff have been trained while 1285 children and adolescents have been reached. Over 1000 information leaflets have been distributed with over 100 disclosures & counselling and 2 referrals made. Reports from these schools indicate increased boldness in disclosing attempted abuse and seeking counselling on sexual issues. It is believed that with increased partnerships with service providers, training of Guidance Counsellors and establishment of the policy on handling of disclosures and offenders, disclosures will be more adequately handled, referrals will increase and CSA will be highly reduced.
What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?
Plans have begun to impact 30 school communities around the different area councils of the FCT. Over 15000 students will be sensitised, 300 students selected from various school clubs will be trained as peer educators, 60 Guidance Counsellors and Principals and at least 3000 parents and teachers will also be trained in three years. By the end of the period, advocacies and consultative meetings with stakeholders and relevant service providers will also have been identified to handle referrals and achieve a coordinated response among all key players and establish recommended procedures for handling sexual abuse in the project school communities.
What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?
Funding could be a major hindrance. However, collaborations with the FCT Education Secretariat and other stakeholders will provide unrestricted access to the project schools and facilitate our trainings of their members with minimal cost implications. Funds are however raised to support projects through fees charged for consultancies and sale of CSA informational CD’s. SOAR Initiative will also standardise its materials and suggest a fee for richer private schools in-order to fund the program in poorer public schools.
Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact
In six months five schools will have been sufficiently sensitised with 2500 students reached, 10 school counsellors and principa
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Mobilisation and training of 20 volunteers to conduct the sensitisation outreaches and handle cases and disclosures made during
Identification of 30 Project Schools and Sensitisation Outreaches carried out in 5 of these schools
Training of 5 school counsellors, 5 Principals and 500 parents
Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone
Sufficiently sensitise 10 schools and working with FCT Education stakeholders to develop procedures for supporting school based
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Expand the outreach and trainings to 5 more schools
Identify relevant stakeholders and service providers in the 10 project school communities already reached with which advocacy ca
Carry out advocacy visits and organise a consultative meeting with FCT Education Secretariat and other stakeholders to draft gui
Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world [125 words]
Mrs. Chinyere Eyoh, herself a survivor of CSA, is the Executive Director of SOAR Initiative. Feedback from series of meetings, counselling sessions and more recently from a seminar organised by SOAR Initiative in 2011, indicate that sizable numbers of sexual abuse cases are school based and victims more likely to share their abuse, if at all, with peers, rather than family. It was therefore the general consensus of participants at that seminar that school communities, which have the single largest group of children and a wide range of stakeholders that can also be impacted, be used as a platform to build capacity and influence policy regarding Child Sexual Abuse. The “School Reach CSA Prevention Program” therefore commenced in February 2011 in the FCT.
Tell us about your partnerships
• The FCT Education Secretariat through the Department of Policy and Implementation which ensures access and support of public schools.
• Our membership with Child Protection Network (CPN), a UNICEF initiated network of Child Protection players, provide us access to varied resource materials and persons and opportunity to also contribute to building members capacity in CSA prevention & response thereby strengthening their own work.
• Our volunteers that form our workforce
What type of team (staff, volunteers, etc.) will ensure that you achieve the growth milestones identified in the Social Impact section? [75 words]
We presently have 10 volunteers and they ensured the success of our programs in 2011. We expect to train 20 volunteers in 2012 to carry out the sensitisations in the project schools and act as case managers to follow up on disclosures made and ensure the success of the rest of the program. With our impact projected to increase in 2012, we will employ a programs officer to assist the Executive Director coordinate activities.
Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list
We need to be kept abreast of global statistics on incidence, prevalence and prevention of CSA and emerging trends in response management of victims. Information of conferences and meetings on the above is also welcome. The need for funding cannot be overemphasized to enable us better meet our objectives.