Boys, too, are victims of sexual violence

Campaign poster of the Blue Umbrella Day
Gender stereotypes and misconceptions held out for boys make them more vulnerable to abuse “which results to them far less likely than girls to report abuse or ask for help and support when abused.”

By DAWN CECILIA PEÑA 
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — An advocacy group on the prevention of child sexual abuse pointed out that sexual violence occurs more often on boys than girls.

Gender stereotypes and misconceptions held out for boys make them more vulnerable to abuse “which results to them far less likely than girls to report abuse or ask for help and support when abused,” the Center for the Prevention and Treatment of Child Sexual Abuse (CPTCSA) said.

This week, the CPTCSA led the Philippine Blue Umbrella Day Campaign to commemorate the National Awareness Week for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation.

Its executive director Zenaida Rosales said, “This is to raise awareness and change social norms on how to better care for boys and protect them from all forms of abuse including sexual violence.”

The Philippine BUD Campaign, which is supported by 12 government agencies and six international NGOs, hopes to engage the United Nations into adopting the movement into an international day of advocacy on the care, protection, and empowerment of boys worldwide.

“The experience of boys on abuse and violence have negative consequences on their lives, and the effects can be felt throughout all of society. The time has come for us to look at the realities of boys and do something about it,” Rosales added.

The group cited the 2016 National Baseline Study on Violence against Children which states that one in four children suffer from any form of sexual violence in any setting. 

Further, sexual violence occurs more often on boys (28.7%) than girls (20.1%), the 2016 study also noted.

The CPTCSA also participated in the global scoping study “Caring for Boys Affected by Sexual Violence” in 2018, which found that boys’ school experience, multimedia exposure, and peer influence are more impactful than their families’ influence in shaping their views.

The scoping study also noted that boys have varying influences regarding their views on sexuality and on being male which can affect their potential perpetration or victimization regarding abuse. (https://www.bulatlat.com)

The CPTCSA advocates for a safe world for children free from sexual abuse and exploitation and is part of the Family for Every Child Alliance in initiating the campaign to “encourage parents, communities, and societies to protect boys and nurture them in ways that best support their well-being.”

They have trained counselors who offers free online care and support to those in need of emotional assistance and guidance from 8AM-5PM from Mondays to Fridays. You may reach them via mobile at 0977-652-0230 or visit them at cptcsaph.org.

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