Children are our future and any society that provides a wholesome environment for the children is assured of a stable and healthy future. Unfortunately, studies have shown that nearly 60 percent of the children all over the world either have endured physical violence or witnessed it inflicted on somebody else. In both these cases, it leaves a lasting effect on the innocent impressionable minds. Compared to advanced society in the west where there is a well-defined structure that helps children, who are facing abuse, by giving them counseling and prosecuting the abusers. Third world countries, like India, face an alarming situation due to the lack of such mechanism (both government as well as by NGOs).
Violence Faced by Kids
Children nowadays faces a whole range of violence that include both physical as well as mental. Recent studies have shown that children below the age of 10 face physical violence from older siblings, or even parents, sexual assault, maltreatment by teacher and bullying in the school as well as in the neighborhood by older kids. As the child grows old, the pattern of violence shifts to gang violence (kids living in slums), physical assault by older bullies, and rape.
Beside such physical violence, the kids are also likely to witness violence in the community as well as in their home (between their parents). All these leads to serious behavioral as well as emotional problems among these kids, which if ignored, may not only cause permanent damage to these kids but also affect the society adversely.
Symptoms of Child Abuse
It is essential that the early symptoms of childhood violence be detected by the parents, teachers, counselors or even social service personnel before they can make a lasting damage to the child psyche. These signs include inability to take stress, violent tendencies, impulse control, inability to focus attention, alcohol and drug abuse and in the extreme cases even suicide attempts.
Effect of Childhood Violence
Risk Factors of Childhood Violence include increasing antisocial behavior, irritability, inability to contribute to the society in a healthy way, regressive behavior, anxiety, attachment problems, depression and aggressive behavior.
In addition, these kids also likely to have health-related problems as well as cognitive, academic and, delinquency issues.
This widespread rot in our society cannot be tackled by the government alone, as parents, family members, community leaders, social services and juvenile system too have to work in tandem to address this issue holistically.
It is important that the parents look out for sign(s) of bullying or sexual abuse in their kids. Teachers and counselors should also pitch in to see if the child is facing or witnessing any domestic violence and the social service and juvenile board should look out for the criminal behavior pattern in a kid and try to nip the rot in the bud by delving into the root cause of such behavior.
Only by such collective efforts we will be able to give a healthy and happy environment to our children so that they can achieve their full potential.
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