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The Possibility of Change

What is challenging in my society? There are many social ills, many things not working. With an astounding figure of challenges, you wonder, where to tackle a problem. However when it affects the future generation, we just have to do something. No matter how drastic!

Child sexual abuse, molestation and sexual violence are silent killers of the destinies of children in Nigeria, my country. The rising numbers do not represent Nigeria alone, but cuts across all tribes and tongues.

In 1999, the World Health Organisation declared it a public health epidemic and the Regional office in a meeting that held in 2004 called it the Silent Epidemic. What are the responses put to work to deal with the problem?

We do not have a bad system. What we have are people who will not go the extra mile in fulfilling their lawful expectations - People who will not add the ingredients of initiative to their assignments. My interesting challenges mirror the decadence in the systems.

The criminal justice sector comprising of the Police (Law Enforcement), Social Welfare (Child Protection etc.), Medical and Judiciary are the professionals that a victim of sexual violence will relate with either as first responders or secondary. This sector is drenched with obsolete laws, policies, lack of adequate training amongst others. In conclusion, the change clock is ticking slowly and frustrating efforts for change.

Sometimes, you think you are not contributing much.

Surprising to me, even countries viewed with much respect to the advanced developments in Rape Crisis Response face similar challenges as I recently learnt at the 2nd International Conference on Survivors of Rape held at University Medical Centre, Utrecht, The Netherlands. My colleague and I presented a poster which won the Best Poster Award. Not to brag… which I cannot in all modesty attempt.

Of course, we were elated and astonished, here at a conference that feature all professionals in the area of sexual violence response such as Psychologists, Forensic doctors & Nurses, Psycho-Trauma professionals, Sexologists, Law Enforcement Officers, Psychiatrists, etc. Nigeria shined on its 50th Independence Day anniversary.

The rate of convictions/Pleas are equally low the world over. The barriers are same all over the world particularly Non- Stranger Sexual violence which amounts for over 75% of cases. Others are the Silence which continues to fuel Sexual Transmitted Infections like HIV infections, Teenage Pregnancy and even for adult women unwanted and unplanned pregnancies.

Already, I head an organization that has started to proffer solutions that are result oriented within our low resource setting and creating change to the response of sexual violence in my country. With a population of over 140 million in Nigeria, the task is enormous. Yet, change is imminent.

PulseWire is a citadel of community of women and reaches the world that si beyond women. It is an effective tool in sharing the triumphs, lessons learnt and also motivating and inspiring ourselves that regardless of our situations there is hope out there.

That’s my life’s work and mission.

Comments

Jan K Askin's picture

VOF assignment 3

Dear Princesskay,

You clearly express your deep concern and dedication to reducing and eliminating sexual abuse, particularly of children. Your arguments are strengthened by your use of data, such as that 75% of abuse cases involve non-strangers. You indicate that there is not a bad system in Nigeria; there is lack of will to tackle this problem. The problem is made worse because many people in power do not want to talk openly. Congratulations to you for facing this problem in your country so openly. And many congratulations to you and your colleague for winning the poster prize. Is it possible to see the poster online?

Your sister in the US

Jan Askin

Princesskay's picture

Thanks

Hello Jan,

Thanks a lot for kind words, they are really appreciated. Nevertheless, the work continues. The conference website has not uploaded the news and abstract and posters. I will attach the poster and some pictures in a fresh post in my journal and tag it - Child Sexual Abuse At Highest Level. So watch out for it after my last assignment is completed.

Once again thank you for the congratulations.

Regards,

Princess

change is the only inevitable thing

Beverly Rose's picture

Dear Princesskay, As a

Dear Princesskay,

As a Listener for your week 3 assignment, when I finished reading your assignment all I could say was 'WOW'. What an amazing woman you are!

In my work as a domestic violence advocate I also work with sexually abused women and children. I can totally relate to the challenges you described, yet you are optimistic that change can (and is) happening. Thank you for the work you do and for being willing to share it with the world!

As Jan requested above, is it possible to see your award-winning poster? I don't think anyone would consider you to 'brag', but we would like to acknowledge your creativity. Also, would you allow me to share this assignment with my colleages in the sex abuse community?

Finally, if I may remind you of something I am frequently reminded of: even though sometimes we wonder if we're 'contributing much', we don't always know who we've affected and helped in this work. But guaranteed, you do make a difference!

Aloha,
Beverly

Princesskay's picture

Hello Beverly, Thanks for

Hello Beverly,

Thanks for your comments. They are appreciated and from your work you do understand better the challenges faced.

You can share my assignment - and thanks for that too. Afterall, its one of the vision of PulseWire - connecting women and giving the space to give them a voice to be heard and contribute to solutions etc.

Sometimes really, you wonder if you are making a difference, but just like you said, We are.

I shall be doing a piece on my journal and tag it - Child Sexual Abuse At Highest Level. So watch out for it and the poster will be attached and pictures from the conference after my last assignment is completed.

Thanks so much for th eencouraging words.

Regards,

Princess

change is the only inevitable thing

Dear Princess or Queen for the women and future generations of youth who declare an end to the violence, abuse and any form of human rights violations.

As I read your impassioned words or cry for the judicial, social service and elected officials to step up and stand up to make the changes needed to protect the children, women and families who simply want the chance to live free of violence. I was moved by your plea and determination to do what you can to make the change needed to protect our sisters, mothers and most importantly the future generation. THANK YOU!

Your voice and work as a passionate, caring and action/solution focused advocate is so important and valued. May you continue to shout loud from the Mountain top for all to hear and the women will join your voice to be silent no longer. I was reminded of Martin Luther King's speech, "I've Been to the Mountaintop" and "I Have a Dream" when I read your words and felt your spirit.

I look forward to reading more about your advocacy work via World Pulse and VOF, inspiring people to action.

With gratitude and love,

Linda Ando

With Gratitude,

Linda M. Ando

Hello Linda,

Its a pleasure meeting with one of the strong women in PulseWire. Thanks for the prayer and its goes for all of us. We have to keep shouting loud from the mountain top.

Thanks,

Princess

change is the only inevitable thing

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