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How can we reduce mental impact of violence against children?

POSTED September 7, 2021

How can we reduce mental impact of violence against children?

The report released by the UN special representative of the secretary-general on violence against children takes a closer look 

Boy sits on a bench with backpack and looks into the distance

Violence against children is commonly associated with physical abuse but the mental impact is often unseen and unreported. So, the United Nations’ special representative of the secretary-general on violence against children (SRSG) has published the report “Hidden Scars – how violence harms the mental health of children.”

“Violence against children is linked to a wide range of mental health problems. These include anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, post-traumatic stress disorder, substance misuse, aggressive behaviour and impaired cognitive functioning,” notes the SRSG report.

Providing help to this underfunded issue is tough, especially when few young people seek help, but Hidden Scars reports there is some indication that the following will help:

  • maternal mental health, mother-infant interaction and play
  • community-based rehabilitation programs
  • life-skills training within schools

At Children Believe, we’re helping children better protect themselves by promoting healthy, safe and inclusive spaces for learning, equipping communities with knowledge and tools to protect young people’s rights, and by working with communities and government to end harmful practices, including child marriage and child labour.

Ensure children are being protected and heard. Learn how.

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ABOUT CHILDREN BELIEVE (formerly Christian Children's Fund of Canada):

Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60 years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.

About ChildFund Alliance:

A member of ChildFund Alliance, Children Believe is part of a global network of 12 child-focused development organizations working to create opportunities for children and youth, their families and communities. ChildFund helps nearly 23-million children and their families in more than 70 countries overcome poverty and underlying conditions that prevent children from achieving their full potential. We work to end violence against children; provide expertise in emergencies and disasters to ease the harmful impact on children and their communities; and engage children and youth to create lasting change and elevate their voices in decisions that affect their lives.

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