BY MIKE MACLENNAN
Viva’s partner network CarNet Nepal is responding to the needs of vulnerable children, by improving their wellbeing and providing protection against exploitation.
Empowering the weak. Seeking justice.
Nepal is experiencing a rising frequency of child abuse and trafficking. Around 7,000 Nepalese girls are trafficked to India every year with an estimated 200,000 Nepalese women, aged mostly between ten and twenty years old, working in Indian brothels.
Poverty has also led to the migration of around two million Nepalese to work abroad and the rise in the number of people leaving the country across the open border with India widens opportunities for traffickers (University of Oxford Refugee Studies Centre).
In response, CarNet Nepal is aiming to encourage a new generation for justice against abuse and trafficking and continue God’s calling in Isaiah by; raising awareness, teaching people how to prevent this injustice taking place, and through providing practical interventions.
To achieve this, CarNet Nepal has led child protection consultation and training to 28 Pastors and Leaders from ten different churches.
This two-day event resulted in the participants learning how to prevent and intervene in situations of child sexual abuse, domestic violence or children being separated from families. These Leaders and Pastors also learnt how to raise awareness on these issues in the community and made an action plan to reach 750 people between the ten churches.
Enriching the poor.
As well as teaching leaders, which leads to an increase in awareness about how to prevent child abuse and trafficking, CarNet Nepal also works to keep children in school so they are less at risk of exploitation, and receive a better education, which also leads to a rise in employment.
One way in which CarNet Nepal aims to improve the attendance at school is through the distribution of school bags. With the provision of school bags, children no longer have to walk to school carrying books and materials in their arms or in plastic bags.
CarNet Nepal provided school bags to 25 children from Omega Child Learning Centre children in May with the intention that it would attract them to go to school.
The network provides uniforms, which also motivates them to attend school regularly.
Navaraj Bhatta, a School Principle, made the comment that “as a result of these recent strategies, other children have rejoined and becomes regulars in school”. These interventions have successfully impacted the community in Nepal with more children receiving an education and spending more time in a safe environment protected from abuse.
God is working in Nepal where a spark of hope is igniting. Viva’s partner CarNet Nepal is at the forefront of this, fuelling change and battling against the storm of child abuse and trafficking by providing awareness, training and education.
Mike MacLennan is a Year 11 student from Abingdon, and spent a week doing work experience at Viva’s office in Oxford.