REPORT ON THE WORK OF THE SOS-TELEPHONE FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE (FREE toll HELPLINE) 01.03.2008-01.05.2008
The free SOS telephone for children and young people (0800 1 22 22) is the first of this kind in our country and it functions continuously for over 15 years as part of the FIRST CHILDREN’S EMBASSY IN THE WORLD-MEGJASHI.
In the period of 01.03.2008- 01.06.2008, the SOS line registered 60 calls made by children and young people, as well as concerned parents who also called us for help, advice and information. In 27 cases we reacted with our Free Legal Service by offering legal advice or assistance. Mostly we received calls from concerned parents and grand parents, as well as eyewitnesses of unfortunate events which regarded the children. The majority of the callers were females although we’ve noticed an increase of the number of male callers lately.
- Abuse and violence
- Family violence. It’s in a form of verbal and physical violence, punches, incest, raping, threats etc. Although the male is pointed out as the aggressor in the family by the world statistical data, in this period we’ve noticed a remarkable increase of the female aggressors.
- Violence in the schools (child to child; teacher to child). We’ve remarked conflicts, verbal and physical violence, lack of tolerance, empathy and trust among the students, but also among the teachers in elementary schools and preschool teachers.
- Family problems-most of the calls were about problems related to custody over the children or the right for visiting and spending time with the children for the parent who doesn’t have custody. We’ve noticed dysfunctional relations and lack of communication in cases of divorce. Also, the family problems were frequently accompanied by the family violence.
Psychophysical health- The younger callers (teenagers) were mostly interested in issues related to health. We’ve offered them psychophysical support and we’ve also provided consultation for the parents in order to help them with their problems with the teenagers, the education, communication in the family and the school, the behavior problems etc.
Other- Financial problems, missing person, trafficking, addiction problems and problems related to court or police procedures where there were children involved.
In the cases which demanded the protection of the child’s rights, the First Children’s Embassy in the World Megjashi was cooperating with the Ombudsman and in some cases with the police, the courts, the social services and other institutions.
Finally, we have had excellent cooperation with the other non governmental organizations. We’ve addressed some of our clients to their attention, in cases when we considered that they will provide them more appropriate help, like for the cases of addiction or prostitution problems.