Training and Capacity Building
HAQ provides training to law enforcement agents on a regular basis. The programme was initiated with the realisation that rarely are police personnel, particularly at the lower level, aware of the provisions under various laws pertaining to children. Both Children in Need of Care and Protection (CNCP) and Children in Conflict with Law (CICL) suffer owing to this inadequacy. In particular the knowledge of police personnel about the Juvenile Justice Act 2000 (as amended in 2006) is pathetic, some not even having heard of it.
Lacking basic legal information and knowledge, their handling of child victims and children in conflict with law are far from satisfactory. Even less do they know of wider issues such as child trafficking or of child rights.
HAQ offers the opportunity to the law enforcement agencies to fill this lacuna. HAQ organises training programmes for police personnel, including Sub-Inspectors, Assistant Sub-Inspectors, Head Constables and Constables. The modules cover various aspects of the JJ Act, the persistence and implications of child trafficking and wider child rights issues. The results of these trainings have been encouraging -- many who have undergone them have got back to us with queries as well as information.
Child Participation Workshops
HAQ works towards enabling children to participate effectively, engaging with them and facilitating their participation through activity based workshops, and other forums. Over the years it has become amply clear that children need to participate in discussions and decisions that concern them. All children anywhere in the world need to have information about their rights and responsibilities. Children can express their desires, feelings and apprehensions effectively through creative mediums such as drawings,paintings and photography.
With this in mind, HAQ initiated the process of Child Partcipation Workshops in 2000. Using creative art and participatory discussions as the medium, HAQ attempts in these workshops to:
- Encourage children to explore their needs, rights and responsibilities .
- Help them identify the violations that they face personally and as children in general as well as the obstacles faced by them in the realisation of their rights, individually and collectively.
- Encourage them to express themselves.
- Make the children aware of the Convention of the Rights of the Child and what is available to them as a right under the existing national laws and policies.
- Develop a methodology on how to interact with children on child rights through creative art. Through workshops with children HAQ has been able to break away from the traditional methods of training and develop a new methodology on imparting child rights. Traditional art teaching techniques are innovatively integrated with concepts related to rights.
Through a series of exercises children are taken from exploring the self as individuals and as members of their families and the community. These exercises have a proven therapeutic value as children begin to understand when individual needs translate into a right and recognise that rights are not without responsibilities.