Child Protection

 To see our work on child protection click here.

Why Child Protection?

Although children have a basic right to protection over 500 million children around the world are subject to abuse and different forms of violence at home, at school and in their communities every year .

Children of different ages face violence and abuse daily which affects their long-term development and their ability to exercise choices about their lives.Violation of the right to protection may take the form of physical and psychological violence, neglect, omission and exploitation of children; protection issues differ amongst children according to age, stage of development, gender, disability, and ethnicity.

Child protection challenges include:

  • Harmful traditional practices – 125 million girls and young women undergo Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in the world, most before they turn 15 (UNICEF)
  • Institutional abuse – Corporal punishment is widely accepted as a means to discipline children even though it would be punishable by law if done to an adult. Only 5 African states prohibit corporal punishment both at home and at school .
  • Violence at home or in their close community – Every year 150 million girls and 73 million boys around the world experience sexual violence and it is mostly perpetrated by a family member, peer or teacher (WHO)
  • Child marriage – 46% of women (20-24) were married at the age of 15 in South Asia and 38% in sub-Saharan Africa (UNFPA)

The failure to protect children is widespread and children who experience violence are less likely to perform well in adulthood. Thus if a large proportion of the child population is affected by protection issues, society suffers as a whole.

HDF’s Response

Our child protection programme seeks to ensure that all children, especially those over 10 yrs of age, are protected from any form of violence. HDF supports projects that:

  • address underlying causes of child protection issues
  • support the development or improvement of integrated protection systems
  • support families and communities to be able to better care for their children

To strengthen its positive impact within child protection field HDF collaborates with other donors and is part of the Elevate Children Funders Group.