10 December 2012

Young victims of domestic and sexual violence have access to formal education

ETLJB 10 December 2012 - There are 23 children and young people who are the victims of domestic, sexual and other types of violence currently sheltered at the shelter house Uma Mahon Casa Vida in Bidau Akadiru-Hun in Dili. Casa Vida now provides them access to formal education, from primary up to higher levels of education.

The coordinator of Uma Mahon is Mrs Domingas Soares. The Dili Weekly reported on 6 December remarks by Mrs Soares saying that “at Casa Vida we have a system to develop the children’s livelihood and has created studies for them. We also provide support to pay for their schooling as well as their study necessities." Funding is provided by  national and international donors, the government and individuals.

Apart from supporting these young people, Casa Vida also encourages children who are victims of violence who don’t want to study to take part in other activities offered at Casa Vida.“Our vision and mission is for them to become independent, so that they can have access to education and employment. We hope that once they go back to their families and society, they are not dependent on their parents, society and government can use the knowledge they acquired while they were staying here,” Mrs. Soares is reported to have said.

In addition, the Minister for Social Solidarity, Mrs. Isabel Amaral Guterres, stated that the government policy on looking after vulnerable families was to provide subsidies for the elderly, the invalid and for mothers, as well as give support to Uma Mahon as a government associate in order to care for children. The Minister noted that these policies were a continuation of the previous government's policies and that the government would continue to support Uma Mahon.

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Source: The Dili Weekly. Edited by ETLJB.

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