I am here to do round up this discussion, which I began few days ago. I hope it has been interesting and rewarding.
I think the last child protection-focused question you must ask is how is the progress of the children measured? Monitoring progress must be one of the most critical responsibilities of secondary and primary caregiver. Monitoring of children progress takes us to the three areas of their lives, spirit, soul and body. Every encounter of the primary and secondary caregiver with the child must achieve development and progress. Any encounter with the child that does not bring progress is a waste of a priceless opportunity to make a positive contribution in the life of the child.
Progress or development of the child in the hands of the primary and secondary caregivers must never be subject to their whims and caprices. It must be made to pass through the eagle eye of universal principles and universally acceptable standards of child development. It is a dangerous venture for children to be in the custody of primary and secondary caregivers, who lack the commitment and the expertise to understand the developmental needs of our children and take every step to meet same. When children are in the care of people in this category, they have no clue about what the child is going through, not to talk of helping the child. They have no eyes to see symptoms of abuse not to talk of smelling it. Their senses are dull in picking the emotional signals of the child, transmitting reports of abuse or abusive treatment and his/her yearnings, hopes and aspiration for prevention and remedy.
The point which the primary caregiver must know is that abuse is a formidable threat to the progress of the child and it happens even in strangest places including the children department of religious places of worship. The other point is that abuse has as free reign or dominion where the primary and secondary caregivers are clueless about child development and how to measure same. Those who are skilful in child development smell abuse (and its attendant symptoms) from many miles. They do not only smell it, they know in clear terms what to do to prevent it, where it already gaining some grounds, they know what to do to stop it and where it is already fully perpetrated, they know the urgent steps to take to help the affected child.
Therefore for the children department of a religious place of worship to protect the child, the leaders, teachers, volunteers and all other stakeholders must have a clear picture of child development, what they want to achieve with the child, spirit, soul and body, which is their contribution towards the development of the child and the expertise and processes to measure the progress being recorded by their contributions. The foregoing helps them to make tangible contributions in the life of the children, accounting for the period the child is under their care, detecting and preventing and detecting abuse.
I think I am through…Now is the time to sign out finally and wait for your responses on this matter of conscience. I charge you today to Think the CHILD…Think TODAY…Think the FUTURE…