‘Spend time with your children’- Dr. Persaud urges in safeguard of children’s rights

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Parents must pay attention, listen and bond with their children for them to feel safe.

This is the message delivered by Minister of Human Services and Social Security Dr Vindhya Persaud to scores of parents and students gathered at the National Park on Friday.

The minister was at the time highlighting the critical role parents play in championing the rights of children during an activity for the ‘Every Child Safe’ campaign.

It is in keeping with Child Protection Week being held under the theme: ‘Let’s stand together to protect our children.’

“It takes every one of us to keep a child safe and it simply means that we must be aware of what’s happening to children across our country.

“Aware of the many programmes that exist to protect our children, aware of the dangers that lurk and aware of the importance of listening to children, that is something that could never be underrated,” the Minister of Human Services and Social Security said.

In her message to adults who share the responsibility of safeguarding children from all forms of abuse, the minister urged them to listen to the children. She said the influence phones have on parents and how they distract them from giving their children the attention they need.

To emphasise her dismay, the minister asked the children how they feel when their parents are distracted, to which they confirmed her observation.

Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr Vindhya Persaud (Photo: News Room/March 1, 2023)

“Spending time with your child is very important, from the time of birth bonding happens and that bond must last for the rest of the lives of the parents and children that bond is made stronger when a child feels comfortable in confiding to their parents,” Dr Persaud posited.

However, she explained that the ministry exists to help parents with ensuring that they are equipped to protect their children. She said through partnership between the ministry, families and the other relevant stakeholders, every child in Guyana can become protected and taken care of.

Her sentiments were shared by the UNICEF Deputy Representative for Guyana and Suriname, Irfan Akhtar. According to Akhtar, public awareness of all the programme and hotlines available for the protection of children is necessary.

“This is important to ensure that every child is protected, every child is respected and every child is an environment which is free from fear and violence.

“We know that we cannot ensure the protection of children alone, we need a multi-sectoral approach and we need a partnership with the different sectors,” Akhtar said.

The massive campaign dubbed was launched in 2021 as part of efforts to curb the high number of reported child abuse cases. It has expanded to target child labour, abuse of children in every form and ensuring parents, guardians and the public are aware of the dangerous consequences abuse have on the development of children.

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