Contact US:

info@endingsexualabuse.org

©2019  Government - Citizen Engagement

ABOUT US

The Global Citizens’ Initiative is an international non-governmental organization (INGO) that supported people who see themselves as global citizens and want to build a better world. Such a network responds to an urgent need for better grass-roots mechanisms that engage people in the processes of advocating for global values, finding global solutions to global issues, and building more participatory global governance institutions. We bring together people and organizations from across the planet to promote global values and help solve world problems.

 

In an effort to address the massive challenges that followed after the vicious civil conflict in Liberia,  ‘The Global Citizens Initiatives – Liberia, is providing a technology-based intervention to link citizens with their government in addressing the widespread problem of child and youth sexual abuse.

TGCI’s Liberia Citizen-Government Engagement Project (CGEP) strives to close the communications and engagement gap in Liberia between government and citizens and their government. We want to demonstrate that through the use of technology and a well-structured two-way communications process, citizens and government can collaborate more effectively to prevent and treat incidents of sexual abuse.

CGEP is being implemented in partnership with Making All Voices Count (MAVC) and the Ministry of Gender, Children, and Social Protection. It began as a pilot Project in two Liberian counties – Margibi and Grand Cape Mount ---that yielded promising outcomes. As a result, with support from MAVC it now has been scaled up to cover four counties and the West Point District of Monrovia.

 

Partners now include MAVC, and the Liberian Ministries of Gender, Health, and Justice. The Project is making use of an innovative development evaluation process that involves stakeholders in monitoring progress and tracking outcomes

Our Goals

The Global Citizens’ Initiative is working in collaboration with the Liberian Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Health, and other key stakeholders to scale up and expand the impact of the successful pilot Citizen-Government Engagement Project. The Project makes use of a technology-based SMS platform and telephone hotline for reporting sexual abuse. It is being implemented in four counties ---- Grand Cape Mount, Bomi, Margibi, and Montserrado Counties as well as the West Point district of Monrovia.

 

The Project seeks to help prevent and address incidence of child sexual abuse in Liberian communities. The goals of our scale-up effort are as follows:

 

  • Implement our technology-based citizen-government engagement innovation over a fifteen-month period (June, 2016-September, 2017) throughout the pilot project counties of Margibi and Grand Cape Mount, in 1 additional county of Bomi and in the West Point district of Monrovia.

  • Reduce the incidence of community and school-based sexual abuse in areas covered by the project by at least 50 %, and increase the ability of local and national government to effectively respond to citizen sexual abuse complaints.

  • Expand official government participation in the Project to include (a) the Ministry of Education with a special focus on school-based sexual abuse and gender violence; and (b) the Ministry of Justice with a special focus on addressing incidents of sexual abuse committed by UN Peacekeepers, and putting in place systems for capturing sexual abuse perpetrators who attempt to flee to neighboring countries.

  • Build the capacity of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Justice to work together to support the Project’s two-way feedback loop system and reduce the incidence of sexual abuse in Liberia.

  • Conduct a rigorous evaluation to document the impact of the Project’s innovation in (a) increasing citizen-government engagement and (b) reducing and effectively responding to the incidence of community and school-based sexual abuse.

Where we work

TGCI’s Liberia Citizen-Government Engagement Project (CGEP) is based in Grand Cape Mount, Bomi, Margibi, and Monterrado Counties, four of the largest counties in Liberia.  They were selected by TGCI to be a part of our project because there have been widespread reports of child and youth sexual abuse in these four counties. These counties were engaged in Liberia’s 14-year civil unrest (1989 – 2003), in which there was widespread sexual abuse perpetrated by males over the age of 18, many of whom were known to their victims.

  • Grand Cape Mount County is located along the border with Sierra Leone, and it composed of five constitutional districts. These districts include, Garwula (26,936), Golakonneh (23,518), Porkpa (42,615), Commonwealth (6,547), and Tewor (27,460), constituting the total population of 127,076.

  • Bomi County is located 35 km north of Liberia’s capital, Monrovia. The country is composed of four constitutional districts with the total population of 84,119. These constitutional districts are: Dowein (13,188), Klay (23,397), Senjeh (30,027), and Suehn Mecca (17,507).

  • Margibi County is located in the middle of Liberia. It has a population of 209,923 with four constitutional districts. They are the Firestone (61,988), Gibi (14,250), Kakata (88,704), and Mambah Kaba (44,981).

  • Montserrado County is Liberia’s most densely populated county with a population of 1,118,241. This county has five legislative districts: Careysburg (29,712), Commonwealth (11,876), Greater Monrovia (970,824), St. Paul River (71,831), and Todee (33,998).

How our project is helping

In each of the four counties, TGCI has introduced a dedicated protected cell-phone based SMS messaging system and (for those who don’t text) a telephone hotline whereby citizens can report incidents of child sexual abuse with the local office of the Ministry of Gender. We also have installed a dedicated database management system in each Ministry of Gender country office that enables the Ministry to record citizen reports and track how they are being addressed.

 

We also have worked with the Ministry of Gender and other Ministries to establish a pathway for referring and addressing reported incidents of child sexual abuse. This referral pathway involves the police, the judiciary, the Ministry of Health and other stakeholder organizations with resources prosecute perpetrators of child sexual abuse and provide remedial services to victims.

The Project also is undertaking a mass media campaign to raise citizen awareness and change their behavior towards the practice of child sexual abuse. Local radio stations run frequent attitudinal and behavior change messages.

Since the Project began increasing numbers of citizens have been using their phones to report cases of child sexual abuse. Testimonies and our regular surveys have shown that citizens are now more comfortable and confident in reporting any case of sexual abuse. Preliminary data also indicate that the rate of successful prosecution of sexual abuse perpetrators also is increasing. The Project will continue to collect data on its activities and will undertake an in-depth evaluation of its impact in August.