sexta-feira, 17 de maio de 2013

Impact of sexual violence, 79% of underage girl victims dropout of school

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JORNAL INDEPENDENTE - By Julio da Silva - 17 May 2013 - TRANSLATION FROM TETUM

DILI: 79% of young girls who suffered sexual violence in Timor-Leste are forced to abandon their school, according to the results of a survey from a local NGO. 

The Director of Rede Feto (Women’s Network), Jacinta Luizinha informed that during their socialization (information campaign) in this year, her organization noted the impact of violation (rape or abuse) of young girls is that 79% of the victims of abuse abandon their studies. Jacinta stated that the violations that occur against young girls are mostly rape and sexual assault which occur while the victims are still in their school-learning process. 

“In the presentation we also see in the results that we have collected thus far that 79% of girls dropout of school because they are not in condition to continue school. Some because they are pregnant, some because of rape or sexual assault that occurs while they are in the learning process. We all need to pay attention to this issue,” she stated. 

“We all need to see how to find a solution, mechanism or means to help them, in particular our girls so that they can return to school and finish their studies.

”The Director stated that she will look for a way that the victims can return to their schooling. 

“According to our organizations that assist the victims, such as Casa Vida and Fokupers, a majority of the victims that stay in the shelters (Uma Mahon), stop their studies due to these conditions. It shows that they want to return to school because they have the same rights as other children, they are still children (minors), with the right to access education,” she emphasized. 

She stated that one problem the victims face if they return to school is discrimination against them. 

“We think this is because each school looks at morality, ethics and discipline and such, but how can we see that this condition is not what they wanted, this is what we must do for them. I think that we need to discuss the issue to look forward and advocate around this issue,” she said. 

She said that they will continue the information campaign so that the schools can receive back girls who have dropped out of school because they were victims of sexual violence. 
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