Formal course opening with the Honourable Minister Castico
With the support of UNICEF and on behalf of CORAM Children’s Services, Wessex Media Group (WMG) with Bramshill Policing Advisers (BPA) delivered a two week child protection and gender based violence workshop. The delegates comprised the police, representatives from the criminal justice system, Tanzania Media Women’s Association (TAMWA), Save the Children and Action Aid.
The course was officially opened by the Honourable Minister Castico, Ministry of Labour Empowerment, Elders, Youth, Women and Children supported by the Deputy Commissioner of Police for Zanzibar, and a representative from UNICEF.
Lena Samuels in conversation with dignitaries
The workshop focused on taking a child and women focused approach, putting them at the heart of every investigation in order to protect and uphold their human rights and to ensure that the highest principles of justice were met. Topics included identifying child abuse, exploring conflicts between the law and harmful traditional practices including FGM, child marriage and gender based violence. The delegates had challenging discussions and enjoyed undertaking the role play in discovering how to protect the crime scene as well as undertaking interviews of vulnerable children and witnesses.
Honourable Minister Castico was so committed to developing positive outcomes that she took time out of her schedule to visit and observe the workshop. The timing was perfect. At that point Steve France-Sargeant of BPA was highlighting the tragic case of Victoria Climbie as an example of wide scale systematic breakdown resulting in the failure to protect the life of a child when there were many opportunities to do so.
Steve said “There’s always a danger that everyone thinks that someone else is doing what they should do to protect a child and that therefore one’s duty is discharged. We see from Victoria’s case the devastating consequences this had for her life. We should never assume but always confirm and not take on face value what we are being told.”
The Minister was visibly moved. She heard from delegates the frustration they experience in progressing cases of gender based violence through the criminal justice system. She spoke about how she will take these matters forward and in fact later that week raised the matter with the House of Representatives. You can read more about this The Daily News
The course had a formal dignitary closure with a representative from UNICEF in attendance. Delegates were presented with certificates and left inspired and motivated to make a difference.
31st May 2016
BPA & WMG with RSCNPF High Command
Bramshill Policing Advisers (BPA) were commissioned by the government of the Royal Federation of St Kitts and Nevis to undertake a programme of police reform and communications development. The Federation had one of the highest incidence of murder per capita in the world and the newly formed government led by the Honourable Dr Timothy Harris was keen to address this.
BPA identified that a fundamental review was required and consequently restructured the police into new directorates, identified and recruited the senior management team including the Commissioner of Police and drafted the strategic framework to help drive proactive policing. The aim was to put the police on the front foot of prevention, detection, reduction, and the prosecution of crime.
In order to achieve this the police needed a foundation to guide them and to this end BPA drafted a number of documents to help shape and guide both strategic and operational policing. These were the Four Year Service Improvement Plan, the Annual Policing Plan and the Six Point Plan. In addition key assets were identified and sourced such as K9’s. Capacity building training to include forensics, criminal investigation, leadership and communications were also developed and delivered for a range of staff at all levels to include both front line officers, as well as management and administration.
As part of this programme, Wessex Media Group (WMG) was commissioned to review police communications in order to build better community relations and improve media engagement. WMG worked with the police press relations officer to craft and sign off press releases, held engagement sessions with both public sector and commercial media in order to foster better partnership working and delivered communications and leadership training to the High Command and Gazetted Officers as well as to the St Kitts and Nevis Fire and Rescue Service.
30th April 2016
Children in Malawi
A scoping exercise was undertaken in Malawi by Wessex Media Group (WMG) in association with Bramshill Policing Advisers (BPA) to identify the need for the delivery of their workshop: “Hiding in Plain Sight-Child Abuse How Do We Know?”
Meetings took place with a range of stakeholders with an interest in child protection: the Permanent Secretary to the Minister of Gender and Children, Chief of Child Protection at UNICEF, a Judge, the Inspector General of Police, the Deputy IGP of Crime, Deputy IGP of Operations, the British High Commissioner, and a representative from Dfid.
The scoping team were able to establish that there was a real and urgent need to raise awareness of child abuse as well as to promote the use of the International Child Protection Certificate. They were provided with the following statistics to evidence this need:
- 2 out of 3 Malawians experience violence in childhood
- 26% of families are headed up by children as a consequence of aids
- 1 out of 4 girls have been sexually abused
- 1 out of 5 boys have been sexually abused
- 2 million orphans in Malawi
- Rated as being 2nd worst for teenage pregnancies and 5th worst for child marriage.
BPA and WMG submitted their report to the National Crime Agency who commissioned the scoping exercise and to the British High Commission in preparation for funding being secured for WMG and BPA to deliver the workshop.
For more information about how the International Child Protection Certificate works see ICPC
1st March 2016
Delegates & dignitaries at the opening of the Child Protection Workshop in Rwanda
Working on behalf of the National Crime Agency and with the support of the British High Commission in Rwanda, Wessex Media Group (WMG) and Bramshill Policing Advisers (BPA) delivered their “Hiding in Plain Sight – Child Abuse How Do We Know?” child protection workshop at the Umubano Hotel in Kigali.
The workshop was opened by the Minister for Gender and Family Promotion, Oda Gasinzigwa and was attended by other dignitaries including the minister of Internal Security Sheikh Mussa Fazil Harerimana, Justice Minister Johnston Busingye, the Inspector General of Police Emmanuel K Gasana, High Commissioner of the UK to Rwanda, William Gelling and the Prosecutor General, Richard Muhumuza.
The two day workshop saw delegates attending from UNICEF, Rwanda National Police, Voluntary Service Overseas, DFID, Hope Kids Academy, Ubaka u Rwanda and the Children’s Foundation to name a few. The child protection workshop had been tailored to meet the specific needs of Rwanda and looked at how to bring partners together across the country to work effectively alongside the 23 Isange One Stop Centres.
In his opening remarks, the British High Commissioner, Will Gelling said, “The threat to children is real and it has never been more urgent to act together against it. Technology is enriching people’s lives and changing the ways we interact with each other. It offers endless benefits and possibilities to our children.”
He added that the flip side to this was a generation growing up with unlimited access to information which brought with it the ability to communicate and connect with people they have never even met.
As a consequence of the workshop, delegates were motivated to improve their services for child protection and were keen to increase their partnership working on the agenda.
To read how it was reported in the media see All Africa Stories All Africa Stories
24th February 2016
Celebrating 10 years in business is a significant milestone, celebrating 10 years as a community radio station bringing diverse communities together, is a major achievement. Under the helm of station manager, Ram Kalyan “Kelly”, who bubbles up with endless amounts of enthusiasm and energy, the celebration was marked with the launch of community awards that sought to shine the spotlight on those unsung heroes in the community.
Kelly brought a team of judges together to consider nominations of those people who had made a significant difference to the quality of lives of people in their communities. Invariably these community heroes dedicated their time and energy without seeking recognition for their hard work and were profiled by The Daily Echo
Several meetings later and after careful selection, the judges settled on one community award winner and one who was to receive a lifetime achievement award. Every community hero however was worthy of recognition and they were able to meet each other and celebrate unity in the community at a musical showcase event.
Sangeeta Bhabra presenting Lifetime Achievement Award to Alice Mowatt
ITV filmed the event and ITV Meridian presenter Sangeeta Bhabra, presented the lifetime achievement award. To see the highlights and interviews with the winners ITV Meridian
The judges included the following:
Sangeeta Bhabra ITV News Presenter
Dahlia Jamil Chair of Art Asia
Don John Race & Diversity Consultant
Ram Kalyan “Kelly” Station Manager Unity 101
Ravi Parmar President of The Verdict Hindu Temple
Lena Samuels Director Wessex Media Group and BBC Radio Solent Producer
Ahmad Sasso MBE Hampshire Constabulary
Gulzar Sharif Deputy Chief Executive West Itchen Community Trust
Harjinder Singh Economics lecturer at Southampton Solent University
11th January 2016