Investigating the underlying causes and consequences of violence in childhood and gathering information on effective methods of prevention.
Every year, as many as 1.5 billion children around the world experience severe forms of physical, emotional and sexual violence. This not only harms children directlyit also adds to inequality. Children who experience violence at home or at school are more likely to be absent from school or to drop out and thus, are deprived of a full, high-quality education. There are also major financial costs. Each year up to 8% of Global GDP is spent on repairing the damage caused by childhood violence yet most governments fail to invest in tackling the root cause. As a result, they are failing to protect their investments in areas such as education, health and justice.Expand
Violence against children is global. No country is free from childhood violence. Know Violence in Childhood will, therefore, gather knowledge from around the world on the extent of violence and on what has worked, highlighting the opportunities for concerted public action. We aim to tell the story in a way that inspires and motivates policy makers to grasp the issue and invest in prevention. The action needed will depend on national circumstances and prevention strategies must be rooted in local realities. Nevertheless, communities and countries around the world can also draw inspiration from each other.
Though the learning is still underway, a number of initial conclusions are beginning to emerge. For example:
Age — The earlier a child faces violence, the more damaging are its consequences and the extent of psychological and emotional distress. It is vital therefore to support young children, families, and care-givers.
Violence against women — The same household can have violence against both children and women. Strategies to reduce violence against children can thus work in synergy with those to prevent violence against women.
Home and school — Children who experience violence at home often also do so at school. Prevention strategies should thus bridge homes and schools.
Wealth — Childhood violence occurs at all levels of household income – and in rich and poor countries. Poorer countries need not wait to become rich before eliminating violence in childhood.