It is in this context that the All India Council of Christian Women the Women’s wing of National Council of Churches in India as part of 365 Days Zero Tolerance to Gender Based Violence: Make it HappenNow !!! Campaign have prioritized its mission to engage in advocacy to empower communities, congregations, women’s fellowships and church leaders, parents, teachers to work together to end child abuse and promote Child Rights to Life and Dignity.
The campaign of AICCW gained momentum during 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence which is commemorated throughout form November 25th (UN Declared Day of Elimination of Violence on Women) to 10th December (Human Rights Day). AICCW have been engaging in galvanizing women’s fellowship or member Churches to engage in different forms of advocacy to end gender based violence and child abuse. On 4th December AICCW organized a forum / gathering for men and women church leaders from Nagpur to enhance and promote the need to form Child Abuse Prevention Network. Since the gathering was during the Advent Season the theme chosen was “Welcoming Baby Jesus among Us’.
In this forum there were reflections regarding how safe Indian children within our home and community. The documentary on child abuse on ‘Satvameva Janeyate aired earlier in Television channels was shown as an eye opener to church leaders during the meeting. There were theological reflections during this meeting emphasized on the precarious violent condition baby Jesus was born in and similar situation and violence children are facing in India today.
Revd Dr Roger Gaikwad – General Secretary of National Council of Churches in India while welcoming the church leaders gathered during this forum gave a clarion call urging church leaders engage in prophetic mission to end child abuse and build inclusive communities of justice and peace. Mrs Pushpa Waghmare eminent Church leader and Director of Ashirwad Kanti pointed “ It is time for us to form Child Abuse prevention Network in Nagpur and it’s the prophetic duty of church to initiate such process.” According to Moumita Biswas Executive Secretary of AICCW “We are already in touch with Head of Institutions of Christian School in some states in India to work together to empower teachers and even students about child abuse and practical prevention strategies. There are more tasks ahead of us to deal with this pandemic of child abuse in India and we invite ecumenical partners and member churches to join us in this pilgrimage to end culture of violence on children.”
All India Council of Christian Women invites Churches, parents, teacher community leaders and citizen in civil society to take a stand against Child Abuse and Zero Tolerance to child abuse. AICCW aims to focus in the next few years engaging in advocacy in partnership of churches, women’s fellowships, ecumenical faith based and like minded organizations to work together to -: Increase community education and awareness about child abuse, including strategies for prevention, intervention and treatment.
Increase Church and community coordination and communication pertaining to child abuse and child rights issues.
Empower, create awareness and educate children at risk in schools regarding different forms of child abuse, including practical strategies of prevention.
Nurture Indian and South Asian theologies and spiritualities that promotes rights to life and dignity of children.
Equip churches and community leaders to engage in advocacy and act as a pressure on the government to safe guard and implement laws that promotes Child Rights.
Promote inclusion of gender justice education and sex education in curriculum in schools and colleges.