Working with young people in Serbia

18.02.16

An innovative booklet created by children and young people with intellectual disabilities to help their peers understand abuse and neglect has been launched in a number of European languages. The booklet - Nobody is Allowed to Harm You - was produced as part of a ground-breaking project in Serbia, funded by the EU and run by young people, working with J.K. Rowling’s children’s organisation, Lumos, and the Serbian Child Rights Centre (CRC).

The ‘easy to read’ booklet – which has the full title, Nobody is Allowed to Harm You - A book for children and young people to help them understand what abuse and neglect means – uses simple text and illustrations to talk about risks including physical and verbal violence, emotional harm and humiliation, peer isolation, electronic bullying and different forms of sexual violence and sexual abuse.

The booklet has been translated from Serbian into English and Czech, as well as Braille, and there are plans for further translations into other European Union and international languages. It  will be disseminated as a child protection tool for schools, children’s groups and other agencies.

The overall project empowered children and young people - aged from 13 – 27 and members of a ‘child participation’ group known as the ‘Club for Healthy Changes’ - to assess the effectiveness of systems in Serbia in protecting them against abuse. The overall project was entitled Empowering children/young people with disabilities to improve responses to Child Abuse and Neglect.

Using specially adapted materials, the young people expressed their views about child abuse and neglect and made recommendations to the government in Belgrade for improvements. The children and young people also took part – as co-trainers – in a series of well-received training events for senior Serbian professionals in the field of child care and protection. The results are explained in a final report by Lumos and the CRC and a special report by the young people.

The overall project empowered children and young people - aged from 13 – 27 and members of a ‘child participation’ group known as the ‘Club for Healthy Changes’

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