Data-driven efforts to end violence against children
Global estimates indicate that as many as 1 billion children aged 2–17 years, have experienced violence (physical, sexual, or emotional), or neglect, in the past year (1). Violence experienced during childhood has lifelong implications for physical and mental health. Globally, ending violence against children is prioritized within the Sustainable Development Goals, where Target 16.2 calls for ending “abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against, and torture of, children”.
The US Government has established ‘Protecting Children from Violence’ as one of three objectives within its Strategy for International Assistance on Advancing Protection and Care for Children in Adversity. With funding from USAID’s Displaced Children and Orphan’s Fund, the HEARD Project is implementing two work streams that address children in adversity: Data-Informed Strategies to End Violence Against Children and Child Safeguarding. Within data-informed strategies to end violence against children, HEARD is providing direct support to country efforts to act on Violence Against Children and Youth Survey (VACS) data through strengthened policy and program efforts, with a focus on connecting learning across country experiences. Within Child Safeguarding, HEARD is supporting USAID’s efforts to internally strengthen child safeguarding and risk assessment procedures that prioritize the best interest of the child, including ensuring that USAID’s implementing partners have strong safeguarding measures in place as well.