More than 600 police and cyber police officers, as well as 300 educators, psychologists, social educators in Donetsk, Dnipropetrovsk and Kharkiv oblasts will be trained to carry out quality prevention and respond to cases of violence against children online.For children and their parents an up-to-date online tool for filing complaints will be developed. This activity is possible thanks to the project "Empowering Law Enforcement in overcoming online Violence against Children" implemented by a consortium of civil society organisations which was launched in January, 2022, with financial support of the European Union.
"The European Union consistently supports sustainable reforms in the law enforcement sector of Ukraine. The proposed action will significantly contribute to the law enforcement capacities to ensure digital right of children and to build effective up-to-date response to online child abuse. The project will also reinforce the role of civil society and local authorities in upholding high standards and policy for better governance for children safety in cyberspace," stated Xavier Camus, Head of the Good Governance and Democratisation section at the EU Delegation to Ukraine, .
Back in 2019, in Ukraine more than 90% of 14-17 years old children used social networks every day. In 2020, researches found that nearly a quarter of children used Internet were involved in at least one situation of sexual abuse or exploitation online, and 21% of them faced cyberbullying.
“Juvenile prevention works every day to prevent violence against children, particularly online. Therefore, it is extremely important for us, on the one hand, to have quality tools for preventive work with children of different ages, and on the other - to regularly train police officers on how to effectively raise children's awareness of violence and how to act in a coordinated manner if it happens,” Vasyl Bohdan, Head of the Juvenile Prevention Office of the National Police of Ukraine, said.
"The implementing organisations have a strong background in training of specialists and practices in overcoming violence, so they have joined forces to protect children in the digital world", Olena Shypilenko, project coordinator for the Ukrainian Child Well-being Fund Ukraine, commented.
In particular, the project provides for: development and piloting of prevention programmes for children aged 10-18; implementing training and development programmes for law enforcement officers; creation and promotion of an online complaint mechanism; development of regional digital safety strategies for children and training of stakeholders at the local level.
After piloting activities in three regions, the project will share its experience and findings with law enforcement bodies and local authorities throughout Ukraine.
The three year project "Empowering Law Enforcement in overcoming online Violence against Children" is implemented by the All-Ukrainian Charity “Child Well-Being Fund Ukraine”, the All-Ukrainian Public Centre “Volonter” and the NGO "Labour and Health Social Initiatives" with more than 400 000 EUR of financial support from the European Union. The pilot regions are Dnipropetrovsk, Donetsk, and Kharkiv oblasts. The project's duration is 2022-2024.
For additional information, please contact Oleksandra Zarutska: [email protected], +38097 2693916