Strengthening the National Protection System to Prevent and Respond to Online Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in Madagascar
From 2018-2021, UNICEF Madagascar used Fund support to educate children, youth and caregivers on online child sexual exploitation and abuse, ensuring families know how to report cases of violence and address online sexual exploitation. In addition, UNICEF Madagascar strengthened existing services in place to protect children, integrating specific measures for addressing online sexual exploitation and abuse into the National Child Helpline and Madagascar’s “One Stop Centres,” which provide children who have experienced sexual violence with access to medical and psychosocial care. In these centres, the child protection service division of the police are all located under one roof.
To ensure perpetrators are investigated and prosecuted, UNICEF Madagascar is trained judges, police, social service providers, prosecutors and other members of the justice system, ensuring they have the tools they need to handle an online child sexual exploitation and abuse case. UNICEF Madagascar also strengthened the country’s existing database on sex offenders and collected data on online child sexual exploitation and abuse, identifying the trends and drivers of the issue to tackle it at its roots.
In 2022, with more support from the Fund, UNICEF Madagascar will support children and those around them to be able keep themselves safe online. Although access to the internet remains limited in Madagascar, its use is presenting opportunities but also many dangers for children and young users. This project will empower children and their families to prevent and respond to online exploitation and abuse while providing supportive services for children who have been abused. It is working for a safe, positive online experience #ForEveryChild