A month of talking about child sexual abuse isn’t the most pleasant experience, as the CSAAM Team has learned over the last few years of working on this campaign. For many of us involved in this it is personal and this brings back only bad memories. Frankly, we don’t know too many lives untouched by CSA, and it is this brush with it that drove each one of us into joining this initiative. That extra step to make sure we spread awareness, save a child from being touched inappropriately, scarred for life.
It’s been interesting to watch the world around us change over the last few years of running this initiative. More writing on CSA – be it poetry, fiction or personal accounts. More advertising bringing the taboo out in the open. More posters saying what words sometimes fail to convey.
But even as the month raced by, it seemed as though a message was being sent to us. A five year old kidnapped by her neighbours and tortured and raped in a basement. A six year old raped and dumped in a public toilet. A four year old girl in Madhya Pradesh lured by the promise of some food and raped. She died of a cardiac arrest while in hospital. A message that more awareness is needed – that we’re nowhere as safe as we need to be. It’s not that child abuse is a new trend; it’s just that we’re reporting it more, talking about it more and more aware that we need to protect our children.
And by protect, we mean to empower them, teach them, instill confidence in them that they can come to us with every little story, nothing too small for our attention – be it that Uncle in the colony who keeps offering them sweets to come in or the conductor bhaiya who invites them to sit in his lap.
On that note, we’d like to thank everyone who helped us bring this month of awareness to you – volunteers, contributors, NGOs and of course you, the readers.
Until next year…