Children have the right to grow surrounded by respect and loving care. Their rights have to be safeguarded; children need to be guided when taking a decision; need the necessary support to grow up without unnecessary pressures, whilst developing their personality. This is possible through positive parenting, away from all types of abuse.
Last year, the Foundation for Social Welfare Services strived to increase awareness on the importance that children are given a good upbringing in a family environment, where they are loved and respected. Several countries mark Child Protection Day on different dates and the blue ribbon symbolises the colour of bruises that many children around the world bear because of the abuse they pass through. The idea of the blue ribbon originated in 1989, when an American grandmother tied a blue ribbon to her car’, in memory of her grandson, who had just died at the hands of his abusive father.
During the month of May, the Foundation for Social Welfare Services marks Child Protection Day, through an informative campaign aimed to emphasise our responsibility as a society, to prevent abuse. Thanks to the blue ribbon, the Foundation symbolises its commitment in preventing child abuse.
The Foundation for Social Welfare Services, through its agencies Aġenzija Appoġġ and Aġenzija Sedqa, offers support to many children and families through various services and programmes within the community. The Foundation aims: to increase awareness amongst the general public against abuse; protect children from abuse; and to support the family. It is important for parents to develop their parenting skills, identify resources which help them understand and meet their children’s needs, and ultimately protect them from any type of abuse.
The aim of this campaign is to focus on parents’ responsibility and how they can provide their children with a positive upbringing. Positive parenting involves parenting techniques based on love, encouragement, discipline, care and positive environment; instead of continually criticising them. This type of parenting is free from abuse or violence that leads children to grow up insecure, undisciplined, insecure and with low self esteem.
On a regular basis, the Foundation for Social Welfare Services embarks on various initiatives that promote positive parenting. These include media interventions; dissemination of informative material for parents and also for children; programmes and interventions within the community; prevention programmes in schools; parental skills courses; discussions with parents’ groups and educators; services that help families passing through difficult situations; and also projects aiming to help families improve their social situation.