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PROJECT BLUE RIBBON – a youth-led organization that raises awareness on Child Maltreatment and Child Rights

PROJECT BLUE RIBBON – a youth-led organization that raises awareness on Child Maltreatment and Child Rights

“Violence against children is a pervasive problem in India, as in many countries in the World. What is most troubling is that a vast majority of children experience violence on a regular basis from adults they know, and in places where they should be safe.” – Nishant Thakur

Simran and Vrinda have been friends for the past nine years and even though they have been living in different cities their bonds have been getting stronger over the past years. Both of them have been involved in social activities but starting of an organization was a great deal for them. And they never even planned to do so. It was a decision taken at the heat of the moment which felt essential.

So, it all started when Simran, the founder of the NGO was sitting with her family and watching the news, when the breaking news broke, a mother of three months old was seeking help from fellow parents as her child’s photo was uploaded on a porn site and it was flooded with nasty comments. She felt extremely bad and it haunted her for days, then one night, she called her friend Vrinda and they discussed it. At that very moment, they decided to start an organisation that spreads awareness on CHILD MALTREATMENT and help people raise their voice against such malpractices. The thing which appalled both of they were, every three out of four children suffer from abuse at the hands of their parents, caregivers, or family members and as a child, it is important for every child to enjoy their childhood rather than becoming the prey of their parent’s misbehaviour towards them or age before actually getting adult. Within a span of a few days, they created a strong foundation and a team of five people and thus established THE PROJECT BLUE RIBBON.

“Only way we could bring the change is by being vocal about thoughts and ideas. In order to do something revolutionary, we need to begin a revolution.” – Yashank Kothari

They have been able to collaborate with both National and International Activists and even started a platform for survivors to share their stories and empower other people to do the same. They have also begun with a website where people write blogs on child abuse and how they can deal with a child abuse victim.

Child Abuse as a topic is a sensitive issue, that sometimes people are not ready to speak about and there are times where the parents just shush their children because of societal and reputation pressures. Simran and Vrinda both say, “If today we  support just one person to speak out their own story, it will help hundreds of people to stand up and share theirs.” So, they started a series ‘TALK WITH SURVIVORS’ where they talk to the survivor and hear their story out and how they recovered from their past, so it motivates, inspires, and brings out the courage in other children as well to raise their voices, have their opinions, and get out of their traumatic experiences life once gave them. And voicing their story will get the offender behind the bars, which may not remove their scars but help them get justice which will lead them to a safe and secure life ahead.

In the past three months, they’ve had conversations with many survivors and what shocked them the most was that the cases of abuse were not done by some stranger but their own family members, relatives and family friends. They as a team are trying to educate children, parents about sex education its importance in today’s World and trying their best to normalise speaking about it, which many are still afraid to do. Recently, they carried out a survey with their social media followers asking them, ‘What will they do if there are no Paedophilia for a day?’ and the answers were astonishing. Around 40% of the followers said that there will be a safe environment and children would be happier, whereas 25% said that they will have no fear to leave their children alone in a park and the rest believed that it will be better for children as they do not have to suffer from the pain of molestation at any age of their life.

The most asked question they had to face was, ‘Why men aren’t speaking about their survival stories?’ And as per many reports, it has been shown that boys experience child sexual abuses more than girls, but only 2% of cases are reported. The problem that comes here is we live in a society where the male gender is depicted to be powerful, the boys in India are generally taught, ‘Boys don’t cry( Ladke rote nahi)’ but rather they should be taught, ‘Crying is not gender-specific, it is not bad to express yourself and cry’.

“When we raise our voice humanity survives and become stronger.” – Shreyansh Chandel

They as an organisation wants to normalise children to live a happy, secure and peaceful childhood, people talking openly about sex education to their children, boys being able to express themselves freely without facing guilt or pressure. Simran and Vrinda along with their entire Blue Ribbon Team want to support every individual irrespective of gender and to be able to voice their opinion so that no child faces any kind of abuse in their lifetime.

We are happy to announce that we are collaborating with Milaap for our first-ever Fundraiser. The main aim of this fundraiser is to help children get to fulfil their basic needs (such as food, clothes, books, toys, pads, and many more) and educate them on sex education.

Kindly donate and help us start this initiative!

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About The Author

Gauri Sood

Life is short make every moment count . 🖤🥂🤍💋🖤♏🤍❄️🖤

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