Children and Equal Dignity


Sophie Schaarschmidt, Director and Coordinator

HumanDHS is primarily grounded in academic work. We are independent of any religious or political agenda. However, we wish to bring academic work into "real life." Our research focuses on topics such as dignity (with humiliation as its violation), or, more precisely, on respect for equal dignity for all human beings in the world. This is not only our research topic, but also our core value, in line with Article 1 of the Human Rights Declaration that states that every human being is born with equal dignity (that ought not be humiliated). We agree with Shibley Telhami, Anwar Sadat Professor for Peace and Development, who advocates the building of bridges from academia as follows, "I have always believed that good scholarship can be relevant and consequential for public policy. It is possible to affect public policy without being an advocate; to be passionate about peace without losing analytical rigor; to be moved by what is just while conceding that no one has a monopoly on justice." We would like to add that we believe that good scholarship can be relevant and consequential not only for public policy, but for raising awareness in general.

The quality of relationships between generations, particularly with respect to the young, shows where a society stands. How we treat our children decides in which world we will live tomorrow. Preventing children's humiliation is paramount for a decent society (Avishai Margalit, 1996, The Decent Society, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press). The same is valid for all generations. The way to dignity for society is to value and nurture the creativity of children, adults, and people of age, who all can bring valuable contributions to social life.

The destructive effects of early childhood neglect and humiliation are significant. Victims may become perpetrators and carry out acts of humiliation through affective blindness. Perry (1997) relates a story that testifies to the severity of the potential effects of childhood humiliation:

A fifteen year old boy sees some fancy sneakers he wants. Another child is wearing them - so he pulls a gun and demands them. The younger child, at gunpoint, takes off his shoes and surrenders them. The fifteen year old puts the gun to the child's head, smiles and pulls the trigger.
When he is arrested, the officers are chilled by his apparent lack of remorse. Asked whether, if he could turn back the clock, would he do anything differently, he thinks and replies, "I would have cleaned my shoes."
His "bloody shoes" led to his arrest. He exhibits regret for being caught, an intellectual, cognitive response. But remorse - an affect - is absent. He feels no connection to the pain of his victim. Neglected and humiliated by his primary caretakers when he was young, this fifteen-year-old murderer is, literally, emotionally retarded. The part of his brain which would have allowed him to feel connected to other human beings - empathy - did not develop. He has affective blindness. Just as the retarded child lacks the capacity to understand abstract cognitive concepts, this young murderer lacks the capacity to be connected to other human beings in a healthy way. Experience, or rather lack of critical experiences, resulted in this affective blindness - this emotional retardation (Perry, 1997, p. 128: Perry, Bruce D. (1997). Incubated in terror: Neurodevelopmental factors in the 'cycle of violence'. In Osofsky, Joy Doninger (Ed.), Children, Youth and Violence: the Search for Solutions, pp. 124-148. New York, NY: Guilford Press, retrieved March 15, 2000, from

On May 4, 2009, Michael Britton contributed with the following reflections on being a child and an adult:

To be "adult" as it was portrayed for many of us was a way to collectively de-center ourselves, to be out of touch with how matters really feel to us, how our lives and our institutions were really going. It meant giving up the ability to think and observe clearly and directly from the more perceptive parts of ourselves. Once decentered, we could only be more compulsively addicted to our institutional errors -- in business, politics, borrowing, spending and so on. Our institutions seemed to run away with us, but it was we who collectively got caught up in going down the wrong pathways as fast as we could and keeping ourselves from knowing this. "Adults" "understood" the ways of power and wealth, leaving behind the childish sensibilities that were concerned about savoring life, cherishing intimacy, making meaning together, the kinds of things that only humans can do together.

The tone of our culture has grown worried and angry. But anger is not the change we need. Instead we need to shake off whatever love we have for the entertainment, consumer, adolescent aspects of our culture, because we blind ourselves to what works best for our real lives when we get lost in the hype and the make-believe. We need to re-center in our own perceptiveness, our own ability to care for our lives and to take care with our lives as a society. Greed, lying and seducing impulsiveness through advertising and "entertainment" are powerful forces that oppose seriously reflecting on life, decentering people just as fast as therapists can help them center. And, by portraying life as dangerous and "serious," and then making it so, the opposite of "entertainment culture," we are talked out of the right to find joy in our own lives, to really love the lives we have and find them deeply rewarding. We need to push back against these cultural ways with the force of co mpassion, tenderness, real interest in life, joy, honest reflectiveness, perceptiveness -- and so make space for the best of our humanness to mature and flourish.

In the movies Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, pushing back is portrayed through the metaphor of physical fights, but the real pushing back is by coming from a different spirit, a different feeling in our hearts, a love of life, opening our hearts expansively to joy and compassion, assuming the responsibilities for nurturing, being strong and clear sighted and articulate. The pushing back comes by reflecting together, finding the treasures in our own personal lives rather than constantly running to catch up with still higher bonuses, still fancier cell phones and trying to be part of the cutting edge of whatever.

Life is how we all move forward together, interconnected, in the journey of maturing in our humanness, in being better able to care for each other and ourselves, and finding life both interesting and an occasion for joy together. People who push back by coming from that spirit, who articulate this spirit and this way of being human as sounder and more legitimate than the make-believe or the over-seriousness, these are the real Jedi Knights of our times!

This is not to say the task is only personal, but to say that in re-tooling our institutions and organizations, we need to be a different kind of "adult" -- not the kind th at is self-numbing at the end of hard days, or the kind that finds relief through make-believe, but the kind that is perceptive, develops genuine interest and joy in life, and knows institutions belong to the life of the entire societal community. And in today's age, the kind of adults among the six billion of us who understand our institutions and our global interconnectedness exists, not to serve some at the expense of others, not to leave some stranded or dead while others live well, not to leave some shamed or deprived while others are proud and empowered, but to serve the life of our entire global community. This is a different kind of adulthood, not so far removed from those childhood sensibilities that treasure life, bubble over with joy and generosity, but grown up enough to weather the irritations and disappointments and make a life where we take good care with all our lives despite our collective imperfections.

We look for interested people, who would like to develop our CED page. Please see our Call for Creativity. Please see here our site on child soldiers.


Please note that the entire HumanDHS website is maintained by volunteers, since its inception in 2003, and this is mainly done by Evelin Lindner. Until 2012, she usually pasted interesting news into this Links section. From July 2012 until 2017, she tagged interesting information on From 2017 onward, you see Evelin's personal list of interesting web links on Twitter:

Inequality damages family life by higher rates of child abuse, and increased status competition is likely to explain the higher rates of bullying confirmed in schools in more unequal countries.
Eckenrode, J., E. G. Smith, M. E. McCarthy, and M. Dineen (2014). "Income inequality and child maltreatment in the United States." Pediatrics, 133 (3), pp. 454-61, doi: 10.1542/peds.2013-1707:
OBJECTIVE: To examine the relation between county-level income inequality and rates of child maltreatment. METHODS: Data on substantiated reports of child abuse and neglect from 2005 to 2009 were obtained from the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System. County-level data on income inequality and children in poverty were obtained from the American Community Survey. Data for additional control variables were obtained from the American Community Survey and the Health Resources and Services Administration Area Resource File. The Gini coefficient was used as the measure of income inequality. Generalized additive models were estimated to explore linear and nonlinear relations among income inequality, poverty, and child maltreatment. In all models, state was included as a fixed effect to control for state-level differences in victim rates. RESULTS: Considerable variation in income inequality and child maltreatment rates was found across the 3142 US counties. Income inequality, as well as child poverty rate, was positively and significantly correlated with child maltreatment rates at the county level. Controlling for child poverty, demographic and economic control variables, and state-level variation in maltreatment rates, there was a significant linear effect of inequality on child maltreatment rates (P < .0001). This effect was stronger for counties with moderate to high levels of child poverty. CONCLUSIONS: Higher income inequality across US counties was significantly associated with higher county-level rates of child maltreatment. The findings contribute to the growing literature linking greater income inequality to a range of poor health and well-being outcomes in infants and children.

First Week Blues, by Jesse Greenslade, 2015
A children’s book on bullying.
We thank Brian Ward for making us aware of Jesse Greenslade's work.

UN-Backed Report Urges Greater Violence-Prevention Efforts for Africa’s Children
11 February 2015 – African girls and boys continue to be subjected to distressing levels of physical, sexual and emotional violence despite the significant legal and policy measures adopted throughout the region, according to a new United Nations-backed report. Launched today at UN Headquarters in New York, The African Report on Violence against Children is the first comprehensive report of its kind in the region and builds upon the commitment put forward by African Union Member States to promote a so-called “Africa Fit for Children.”

"Making Sense of Place: School-Farm Cooperation in Norway," by Erling Krogh and Linda Jolly (2011)
In: Children, Youth and Environments 21(1): 310-321
This paper describes the Norwegian "Living School" national project and its related university extension course, "The Farm as a Pedagogical Resource." Since the national initiative began in the late 1990s, more than 250 separate local projects have been developed through the course. Here we focus on one such project in the community of Aurland. It illustrates the basic principal of "rooting" students in life processes and in the places in which they live through participation in practical, meaningful work outdoors.

The Value of Childcare, by nef (the new economics foundation)
By Jacob Mohun, Barry Amiel & Norman Melburn Trust Fellow, Anna Coote, Head of Social Policy, and Juliette Hough, Researcher, Social Policy, February 12, 2014.
High quality childcare can help children to flourish, whatever their family circumstances. It can help parents to flourish, too, knowing that their children are being well-cared for while they go out to work. But not everyone has access to high quality childcare, and this has far-reaching consequences for children, parents, and society as a whole. Unequal access to high quality, affordable childcare triggers and intensifies a range of income, gender, and social inequalities....

The Shame of Secret Jails for Child Prisoners by Father Shay Cullen
7th July 2013
A few weeks ago, I visited yet again several child detention centers and police holding cells around Metro Manila with the Preda Foundation social workers. We found two small girls, 13 and 14 years of age behind bars looking out tearfully; and next to their cell was an adult male prisoner reaching through the steel bars beside them. They were terrified. The cell of the children had no beds, curtains, toilet, just a bucket in the corner and no privacy. It was terrible. One had been charged with stealing food, the other for kidnapping a child. An adult told her to bring a baby to another place. She was arrested. Immediately we began legal action to have them released to the Preda Girl's Home. In another child detention center on the other side of Metro Manila, we found three small girls, from 6 to 12 years of age, locked in a room with male teenage boys. The place was bare and empty: no beds, chairs, showers, just a single toilet in the corner. It was a depressingly empty detention room. Preda began negotiations with the Center Head to have the girls taken out of that detention holding room. It was no easy task. They were oblivious of the danger of sexual molestation to the small children. The Mayor received US$58,500,00 from the national government's Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to build a home for the children but as yet, only another room in the same building is being renovated. ...
Read more here.

Kids Count Data Center, The Anne E. Casey Foundation
- Children in poverty
- Children in poverty by age group
- Children in extreme poverty
- Children below 150% poverty
- Children below 200% poverty
- Children below 250% poverty
- Persons 18 to 24 in poverty
- Population in poverty
- Single-parent families with related children that are below poverty
- Married-couple families with related children that are below poverty
- Families with related children that are below poverty
- Children living below the poverty threshold by children in immigrant families
- Children living in low-income families (below 200% of the poverty threshold) by children in immigrant families

Free The Children
Free The Children is the world’s largest network of children helping children through education, with more than one million youth involved in our innovative education and development programs in 45 countries. Free The Children was founded in 1995 by international child rights activist Craig Kielburger. The organization has received the World’s Children’s Prize for the Rights of the child (also known as the Children’s Nobel Prize), the Human Rights Award from the World Association of Non-Governmental Organizations, and has formed successful partnerships with leading school board and Oprah’s Angel Network.

Poor Nutrition 'Stunting Growth'
By Nick Triggle Health reporter,
BBC News
Poor child nutrition still causes major problems in the developing world - despite some progress, experts say. A third of deaths in children under five in those countries are linked to poor diet, a report by Unicef suggests. It also reveals 195m children - one in three - have stunted growth, even though rates have fallen since 1990. Unicef said the number of underweight children also remained high, with many countries struggling to hit official targets to halve the figures. An estimated 129m children are underweight. Rates of stunted growth are higher because while some children may be a normal weight - in fact some can even be overweight - the food they are getting is of such poor quality they they have growth problems. Experts warn that such a condition is often irreversible and effectively condemns children to a lifetime of poor health. Dangerous Unicef chief Ann Veneman said: "Undernutrition steals a child's strength and makes illnesses that the body might otherwise fight off far more dangerous. "Unless attention is paid to addressing the causes of child and maternal undernutrition today, the costs will be considerably higher tomorrow."...

Babies to Get New Growth Charts
By Nick Triggle, Health reporter
New child growth charts are being introduced to combat obesity and boost breastfeeding rates. The UK still uses charts from 1990 which are based on growth rates for formula-fed babies which grow quicker. The charts, which are being introduced in England with the other nations expected to follow soon, will mean more children are classed as overweight. But the government hopes it will help to reassure mothers who breastfeed that their babies are not under weight. Guidelines suggest mothers should give their babies breast milk for the first six months of life and then supplement that with food for a further six months...

The ICDP Organisation
The International Child Development Programmes began developing in 1985 but an organisation was not founded until 1992 when we registered as an international NGO, in Oslo, Norway. The ethos of ICDP is to provide for human care by activating empathy and education of both caregivers and their children. We aim to implement recent knowledge from scientific research in child development for the benefit of disadvantaged and neglected children. Our work is based on the principles that are laid down in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. ICDP may participate directly or indirectly in activities run by other humanitarian organisations having corresponding objectives. In 1993, the psychosocial intervention programme developed by ICDP was evaluated by the Division for Mental Health of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Geneva. The programme was later adopted and its manual published as a WHO document. Close cooperation with UNICEF has been established in several countries, particularly strongly with UNICEF Colombia.

Child Abuse Image Trade Targeted
Profits made by peddlers of child sex abuse images are being targeted by a pan-European alliance. The European Financial Coalition brings together payment firms, law enforcement agencies and child protection groups to disrupt commerce in the images. By tracking cash made by sites selling abuse images, investigators hope to stop the trade and find abusers. Backers include Mastercard, Visa, Paypal and UK's Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP). Funded by the European Commission, the coalition is intended to serve as a "stark warning" to those involved in the sale and distribution of child sex images. "It is a reality that the rapid growth of the internet has opened up a market for images of child abuse," said EC vice president Jacques Barrot in a statement. "The European Financial Coalition (EFC) will help identify and protect victims of this horrific crime by following the money trail that takes the police to the offender," he said. By bringing together technology firms, payment providers and law enforcement agencies the EFC hopes to do a better job of finding out how money paid for images flows across electronic payment systems...
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Online Child Abuse Images Warning
Children's charities have expressed "serious concerns" many UK households still have access to images showing child sex abuse via their computers. The government had asked all internet service providers (ISPs) to block illegal websites by the end of 2007. But firms providing 5% of broadband connections have still failed to act. One of them, Zen Internet, said in a statement: "We have not yet implemented the IWF's recommended system because we have concerns over its effectiveness." It is understood other ISPs have cited the cost of blocking the illegal material as a reason not to participate in the scheme. “This is a battle over the merits of self-regulation versus legislation” Rory Cellan-Jones BBC's Technology correspondent. But the NSPCC's Zoe Hilton said: "Allowing this loophole helps feed the appalling trade in images featuring real children being seriously sexually assaulted." The blocked websites come from a list supplied by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), but some smaller providers refuse to use the list. Easy access: The Children's Charities Coalition on Internet Safety (CCCIS) says self-regulation is not working and it is calling for firmer action by the government. Ms Hilton said: "Over 700,000 households in the UK can still get uninterrupted and easy access to illegal child abuse image sites“...
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Huge Split in Child Death Rates
Progress in cutting the number of deaths among children under five is still "grossly insufficient" in some parts of the world, Unicef has warned. Its report, published in the Lancet, shows there has been a fall of 28% in child deaths since 1990. But the UN children's agency warns many poorer countries will not meet the 2015 Millennium Development Goal of cutting that figure by two thirds. The situation is worst in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia, it said. Last year, 9.2m children aged under five died across the world...
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DNA Tests on Texas Sect Children
A Texas judge has ordered that 416 children, removed from a polygamous sect by police, remain in state custody for genetic testing...
The adults in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) group, which broke away from the mainstream Mormon Church more than a century ago when polygamy was banned, say they are being persecuted for their religious beliefs...
Members believe a man must marry at least three wives in order to ascend to heaven. Women are taught that their path to heaven depends on being subservient to their husband...
An expert on children in cults told the court that the girls may have believed that marrying much older men was their free choice because they had been raised in that belief...
"Obedience is a very important part of their belief system," said Bruce Perry. Although many of the adults and children at the YFZ ranch seemed emotionally healthy, the sect's belief system was "abusive", he added. "The culture is very authoritarian."...
Polygamy is illegal in the US, but the authorities have reportedly been reluctant to confront the FLDS for fear of sparking a tragedy similar to the 1993 siege of the Branch Davidian sect in Waco, Texas, which led to the deaths of about 80 members...
Please read the entire article at

Anger over Nigerian Child Census
Parents in a northern Nigerian state have reacted angrily to a government census of "vulnerable children". The nationwide survey is supposed to shed light on the lives of children in poverty. But some parents in the northern city of Bauchi are afraid they will get into trouble because their children work... "We are asking very simple questions," census taker Dalhatu Suleiman Darazon said. "We are also asking questions of the children's parents and guardians, but the problem is some adults think that children don't have a say about their lives. That is wrong"...
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Arab Education 'Falling Behind'
By Dale Gavlak
BBC News, Amman
The World Bank has said the quality of education in the Arab world is falling behind other regions and needs urgent reform if it is to tackle unemployment.
In a report, bank officials said Arab states had to make improving education their top priority, because it went hand-in-hand with economic development...
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New Book: Down-to-Earth Guide To Global Warming, by Laurie David and Cambria Gordon
A book giving children a guide to become active in addressing the problem of global warming. Please see

MPhil in Childhood Studies at NTNU in Trondheim, Norway
The Norwegian Centre for Child Research has a strong international orientation. The centre hosts national and international guest researchers and adjunct professors (5 non-Norwegian professors from 2005). NOSEB is a key institution within the international research network Childwatch International. The students on this programme will benefit from being a part of a strong international research milieu.

Conference on Child Slavery
An international conference is to be held on all aspects of child slavery at the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation (WISE), University of Hull, UK in association with AntiSlavery International, Gilder Lehrman Center, Yale University and Free the Slaves on November 27-28 2008.
Following our highly successful conferences on Modern Slavery (November 2006), and Unfinished Business (May 2007), WISE is now organising a conference, in conjunction with partner organisations, to examine all aspects of child slavery worldwide, including bonded labour, trafficking, domestic servitude and child labour more generally. This is a first call for expressions of interest in attending and in giving workshop papers. Also visit WISE's website

Gene 'Links Breastfeeding to IQ'
A single gene influences whether breastfeeding improves a child's intelligence, say London researchers. Children with one version of the FADS2 gene scored seven points higher in IQ tests if they were breastfed. But the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study found breastfeeding had no effect on the IQ of children with a different version. The gene in question helps break down fatty acids from the diet, which have been linked with brain development. Seven points difference is enough to put the child in the top third of the class, the researchers said ... Some 90% of people carry the version of the gene which was associated with better IQ scores in breastfed children...
Please read the entire article at

Uruguay Buys First '$100 Laptops'
The first official order for the so-called "$100 laptop" has been placed by the government of Uruguay. The South American country has bought 100,000 of the machines for schoolchildren aged six to 12. A further 300,000 may be purchased to provide a machine for every child in the country by 2009...
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Child Trauma Institute
Dr. Greenwald was previously Assistant Clinical Professor and Director of Training for the child trauma program at Mount Sinai School of Medicine (New York, NY), Department of Psychiatry. Prior to that he served as Senior Psychologist with the Mokihana Project (Kauai, HI), a successful demonstration project providing child/family mental health services through the public school system. Special interests include assessment, treatment, and training re child/adolescent trauma, loss, and problem behaviors.

'$100 laptop' to Sell to Public
By Jonathan Fildes
Science and technology reporter, BBC News
Computer enthusiasts in the developed world will soon be able to get their hands on the so-called "$100 laptop".
The organisation behind the project has launched the "give one, get one" scheme that will allow US residents to purchase two laptops for $399 (£198).
Please read the entire article at and on

Documentary Series Indian School
Indian School is a fast-paced documentary series, following a remarkable year in one of the world’s fastest growing cities; Pune near Mumbai. The series gets under the skin of India’s middle classes, exploring their dreams and anxieties in a world that seems to be changing every day.
See more on and on

Mobile System Promises Free Calls
A new way of making calls directly between phones, for free, is being trialled by a Swedish company. It is hoping to dramatically improve communications in the developing world. Swedish company TerraNet has developed the idea using peer-to-peer technology that enables users to speak on its handsets without the need for a mobile phone base station. The technology is designed for remote areas of the countryside or desert where base stations are unfeasible. Projects backed by TerraNet recently launched in Tanzania and Ecuador...
Please read the entire article at

Kids Company
Kids Company is a registered charity (number 1068298) founded by Camila Batmanghelidjh in December 1996 in order to provide practical and emotional support to ‘lone children’. These are children and young people who experience significant psychosocial difficulties because their parent is unable to function as a caring adult. The lack of a functioning adult has a negative impact on their ability to access education, health, housing, and meaningful employment.
These are children who love their parents but live with worry for their well-being. Often the role of child and parent is reversed and the child is left surviving their experience of childhood alone.
The organisation is advanced in its service delivery because it has a multidisciplinary team working at street level, adapting the latest neurophysiological thinking in order to deliver a preventative and reparative therapeutic service to children. It currently supports 11,925 clients, of whom 800 are parents and teachers.
Please see also a longer Interview with Camila Batmanghelidjh, that links up to the Relational-Cultural Theory that Linda Hartling and her colleagues are developing.

World Vision: Building a Better World for Children
Marta Carlson makes us aware of World Vision, which is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice.

Police Plea on Genital Mutilation
The Metropolitan Police is offering a £20,000 reward for information which would bring to justice anyone involved in female genital mutilation.
The campaign is being launched at the start of the summer holidays, during which young girls - mainly from African communities - are thought most at risk. Mutilation involves the partial or total removal of external female genitalia for cultural reasons.... This is child abuse. It is not an attack on anyone's culture, it is an attack on anyone who commits this horrendous abuse of children (Alastair Jeffrey, Metropolitan Police)...

As one of the UK's leading children's charities, Barnardo's works directly with over 110,000 children, young people and their families every year. We run 383 vital projects across the UK, including counselling for children who have been abused, fostering and adoption services, vocational training and disability inclusion groups.
Every Barnardo's project is different but each believes in the potential in every child and young person, no matter who they are, what they have done or what they have been through...

New Journal on Child Trauma
Child Trauma is a new peer-reviewed journal with a primary mission of serving as a data-informed practical resource for mental health professionals who work with children, adolescents, and families. The focus is prevention, assessment, and treatment of child and adolescent trauma, loss, and related issues. Since trauma and loss are potentially related to many child and adolescent issues, the scope is broad. The journal publishes general and special-topic issues.

MPhil in Childhood Studies
Are you interested in children’s everyday lives and in childhood as a social and cultural phenomenon? Would you like to know about children’s lives in different parts of the world? What about the changing conditions of childhood in the era of globalization? If so, the international master’s programme in Childhood Studies might be perfect for you.
MPhil in Childhood Studies is offered by Norwegian Centre for Child Research (NOSEB). The programme aims to provide students with an understanding of the relation­ship between childhood and culture as well as the dynamics between economic, social and political conditions and children’s livelihoods and welfare in different contexts (fam­ily-life, day-care and schools, local communities etc). The programme covers the state of childhood in the western world and in countries in the South. The approach is multi-disciplinary, with particular emphasis on perspectives drawn from anthropology, sociology, geography, and history.

NZ Passes Disputed Smacking Bill
A controversial law effectively banning parents from smacking their children has been passed by New Zealand's parliament.
The legislation closes a legal loophole that allowed parents to use "reasonable force" to discipline their child.
Smacking is banned in some European countries, but is not in most parts of the world.
New Zealand has a poor record of abuse and neglect of children when compared with other developed countries.
PM Helen Clark has said in the past that she hoped the law would correct that.
"New Zealand has on its conscience that our rate of child death and injury from violence, including in the home, is appalling," she said.
Read the entire article at

Online Child Abuse Complaints Up
Reports of websites that contain images of child abuse have continued to climb in the last year, a report has shown.
In 2006, the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) investigated more than 31,000 reports of sites that contained alleged images, an increase of 34% since 2005...
Please read the entire article at

The Child Trauma Institute
The Child Trauma Institute provides training, consultation, information, and resources
for those who work with trauma-exposed children, adolescents, and adults.

Carer Guilty of Abusing Children
A woman who punished three young children in her care by ramming sticks down their throats has been convicted of abuse spanning 20 years. Eunice Spry, 62, from Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire, was convicted of 26 charges and cleared of 12 charges...
Please read the entire article at

Norway Sued by Children of Nazis
By Steve Rosenberg
BBC News, Strasbourg, France
A group of Norwegians who were fathered by German soldiers in World War II are suing the Norwegian authorities at the European Court of Human Rights. The former war children claim they suffered widespread abuse and discrimination after the war.
During the war the Nazis encouraged liaisons between German troops and Norwegian women. It was part of a plan to breed an Aryan master race of blonde-haired, blue-eyed babies for the Thousand-Year Reich. As for the infants produced by these affairs, most became known as Lebensborn Children. In post-war Norway they became targets of abuse, often bullied, beaten, even locked away in mental institutions just because their fathers had been German soldiers. Now, 150 war children are seeking justice at the European Court of Human Rights. They are suing the Norwegian state for having failed to protect them after the war and for discriminating against them.
Norway has, in the past, offered limited compensation to former Lebensborn Children but the authorities have never accepted responsibility for alleged cases of harassment dating back up to 60 years...
Please read the entire article at

Documentary by Kiri Davis Shows How Black Children Still Prefer White Dolls...
Kiri Davis is a young filmmaker whose high school documentary has left audiences at film festivals across the country stunned -- and has re-ignited a powerful debate over race.

Child Poverty in Perspective: An Overview of Child Well-being in Rich Countries by UNICEF
This is the first study of childhood across the world's industrialised nations.
In its league table the Netherlands came top, followed by Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

Trøtt eller turbo?
Siri Hunnes Blakstad
Norsk lov sier at man i større grad skal åpne for større medvirking fra barna selv og at det fysiske miljøet skal underbygge læring og behov for å utrykke seg, og tilrettelegge for barns trang til utforsking av omgivelsene...
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The From Boyhood to Manhood Foundation
The From Boyhood to Manhood Foundation in the London Borough of Southwark was founded in 1996 by Decima Francis and Uanu Seshmi, following concern within the community about the number of young black boys being excluded from school and becoming involved with gangs, drugs and violence. Behind their tough street image, disaffected boys like these suffer from low self-esteem and a lack of confidence. All too often they do not have positive role models or stable adults in their lives to guide them through the transition from boyhood to manhood. Excluded from school, free falling through the criminal justice system, they are on course for short and violent lives. The FBMF believes that boys in trouble deserve a chance to turn their lives around before it becomes too late. It helps teachers deal with disruptive pupils to prevent exclusions. But for those who are excluded from school, it offers an alternative to dropping out of the system and hanging out on the streets. Boys are referred to the FBMF by local education authorities, special needs departments, youth-offending teams and social services departments. The FBMF helps them to get back on track through its day-programme of education and self-development.

Japan Schools to Rethink Beating
Japanese schools should rethink their decades-old ban on corporal punishment, a government-appointed panel has urged. The report, submitted amid growing concern over bullying, stopped short of overtly backing beating, but suggested an end to a policy of leniency. Bullying was found to be involved in 14 of 40 youth suicides from 1999 to 2005 in a country where pupils are also under great pressure to perform well. Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has called the report "wonderful". He said what was important now was to carry it out, though it could take some time. Alarmed by the trend of bullying deaths, the panel, chaired by the Nobel laureate Ryoji Noyori, urged schools last November to punish classroom bullies and crack down on teachers who ignored the problem. Around the same time, the education ministry received dozens of anonymous letters threatening suicide believed to have been sent from pupils. Japan's education minister had previously denied bullying was a factor in the youth suicide rate. The report urges an end to the recent policy of leniency in schools, which had been initiated in response to the growing pressures on children to get high scores on tests, but which critics blame for a drop in standards. It also suggests increasing class hours, compulsory public service and a switch in the start of the school year from April to the autumn. Since 1947, anything from punishing children by making them stand out in the hall to physically striking them is banned. Elsewhere in the region, China and Taiwan have made corporal punishment illegal in the school system. Globally, 109 countries have banned punishing children by beating them. In the United States, 22 states still allow corporal punishment in schools, and the most recent statistics show more than 300,000 American schoolchildren were physically disciplined between 2002-2003...
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One Laptop Per Child Project
$100 laptop project launches 2007
The first batch of computers built for the One Laptop Per Child project could reach users by July this year. The scheme is hoping to put low-cost computers into the hands of people in developing countries. Ultimately the project's backers hope the machines could sell for as little as $100 (£55). The first countries to sign up to buying the machine include Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Nigeria, Libya, Pakistan and Thailand. The so-called XO machine is being pioneered by Nicholas Negroponte, who launched the project at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab in 2004. Test machines are expected to reach children in February as the project builds towards a more formal launch.
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The New Jersey Center for Character Education (NJCCE)
The New Jersey Center for Character Education (NJCCE) helps schools improve academic success and promotes social competency by creating nurturing environments, infusing positive values into the curriculum and teaching youngsters to be respectful, altruistic and responsible individuals. “If kids are anxious, scared or alienated, they aren’t going to learn well. You want to create an atmosphere where learning is promoted, not feelings of inadequacy and conflict,” says Philip M. Brown, NJCCE director. Brown, who previously directed a state Department of Education initiative on character education, acknowledges that public educators sometimes shy away from using the word “moral” to describe their instructional mission. But, he contends, “values are core to our democratic society” and concepts of a good and civil community cross all religious and political boundaries.

The Character Education Partnership (CEP)
The Character Education Partnership is a national advocate and leader for the character education movement. Based in Washington, D.C., they are a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nonsectarian, coalition of organizations and individuals committed to fostering effective character education in America's K-12 schools.

The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
CASEL's mission is to enhance children's success in school and life by promoting coordinated, evidence-based social, emotional, and academic learning as an essential part of education from preschool though high school. CASEL's three primary goals are:
•  Advance the science of social and emotional learning (SEL)
•  Expand coordinated, evidence-based SEL practice
•  Build a sustainable and collaborative organization to accomplish our mission.

The Center for Development and Learning (CDL)
Founded in 1992, the Center for Development and Learning (CDL) is a results-driven 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. CDL specializes in the development and dissemination of leading edge research, knowledge, and best practices from multiple disciplines that impact teaching and learning. CDL's mission is to improve the life chances of all children, especially those at high risk, by increasing school success. CDL's goal is to help all children learn to higher levels and apply their knowledge toward good ends.
CDL has spent more than a decade developing an international network and collaborating with the world's best minds to create initiatives using research-based best practices that deliver increased student achievement, assistance and success. Learn more about what CDL does. Its Board of Trustees, Professional Advisory Board and Community Advisory Council provide CDL with sound leadership and valuable resources. Plans for the Future: Being mission-focused, business-minded, and systems-thinking, CDL's strategy for future growth is focused on expansion of its services in order to help more children.

PC-ES, The Committee of Experts on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse
In the coming years, the Council of Europe’s work to promote and to reinforce children’s rights will stem from the Action Plan adopted at the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government (Warsaw, 15-16 May 2005). This includes also the work to be carried out to protect children against sexual exploitation and abuse.

"No More Excuses": Ending All Forms Of Violence Against Children
Seminar November 17th 2006
Plan Norway.

Bully Game Dropped from UK Shops
A video game depicting playground violence has been banned from some UK shops.
Bully, known in the UK as Canis Canem Edit, will not be stocked in Currys or PC World.
A spokesman for parent company DSG International said the videogame was not in keeping with its "family-friendly image".
Questions have been asked about the game in the House of Commons and children's charities have condemned it.
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Plea for Action on Child Poverty
The United Nations children's agency Unicef has appealed to Eastern European and Central Asian governments to pay more attention to child poverty.
Across South-East Europe and the former Soviet Union it found millions of children were living in extreme poverty despite a recent economic upturn.
In some countries 5% of children lived in extreme poverty, but in the poorest parts of Central Asia it nears 80%.
The report also raised concern about the number of children in institutions.
"Child poverty should be the number one concern of governments in the region," said Maria Calivis, Unicef regional director for Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CEE/CIS).
"Children continue to be placed in institutions, the numbers are not decreasing, and this despite a sharp decline in the birth rate.
"The future of the region is inextricably bound to the well-being of children. If the true potential of all these countries is to be achieved, there must be adequate investment in services for children."
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Report on Violence Against Children
The Secretary-General’s Study Report on Violence Against Children was presented by his Independent Expert, Prof. Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro to the Third Committee of the General Assembly on 11 October 2006 in New York from 3pm.

Alfie Kohn
Alfie Kohn writes and speaks widely on human behavior, education, and parenting. The author of eleven books and scores of articles, he lectures at education conferences and universities as well as to parent groups and corporations.
Kohn's criticisms of competition and rewards have been widely discussed and debated, and he has been described in Time magazine as "perhaps the country's most outspoken critic of education's fixation on grades [and] test scores."

Joke generator raises a chuckle
Software that can construct jokes has been created by researchers. Computer scientists in Scotland developed the program for children who need to use computerised speech aids. The team said enabling non-speaking children to use puns and other jokes would help them to develop their language and communication skills. The researchers admitted some of the computer-generated puns were terrible, but said the children who had tried the technology loved them. The System to Augment Non-speakers Dialogue Using Puns (Standup) project has been developed by scientists at the Universities of Dundee, Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Computer scientist Dr Annalu Waller, one of the project researchers at the University of Dundee, said: "Basically, the computer comes up with novel jokes - many of which are terrible." "Children who are developing on a typical development track actually tell very unfunny jokes, so we have provided that facility for non-speaking children as well."
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Chat users to report child abuse
Users of Windows Messenger can now report suspected sexual predators of children with a mouse click.A "report abuse" icon will soon appear on the chat software as a result of work by the UK's Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP). Users will be encouraged to click the icon when they suffer or witness inappropriate sexual contact. CEOP said, if necessary, reports would be passed to police forces around the world to track down sexual predators.
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Millions to cut deaths in India
The UK has committed £252m to a scheme designed to save the lives of a million Indian children and mothers each year. The funds, to be spent over five years, will help the Indian government boost reproductive health care for the poor and disadvantaged. The aim of the project is to reduce India's maternal mortality rate from 407 per 100,000 live births in 1998 to 100 per 100,000 in 2015. It is also hoped to cut deaths among the under-fives by more than half.
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Children's Right to Peace
A poem plea by Francisco Gomes de Matos

Why are children being killed
In today’s shameful, terrible wars?
Has Humankind become skilled
In keeping closed the Peace door ?

Why are children being victimized
In conflicts ripe for brutal escalation
Has Humankind been duly sensitized
In neutralizing such cruel aberration ?

Why are children being martyred
In bombings based on bitter belief
Has Humankind been duly mobilized
In giving suffering children due relief ?

Why are children’s rights being violated
In dehumanizing acts of every evil kind
Has Humankind been duly orchestrated
In showing our greatest duty is being kind?

Why can’t Humankind always do things that elevate?
Why do many people instead decide to say Yes to war?
Why opt for damaging, destructive actions that decimate?
Lets show children how adults can keep open the Peace Door

Child Maltreatment, November 1 2005, Volume 10, No. 4
•  Candice Feiring
Emotional Development, Shame, and Adaptation to Child Maltreatment
•  David S. Bennett, Margaret Wolan Sullivan, and Michael Lewis
Young Children's Adjustment as a Function of Maltreatment, Shame, and Anger
•  Jeffrey Stuewig and Laura A. McCloskey
The Relation of Child Maltreatment to Shame and Guilt Among Adolescents: Psychological Routes to Depression and Delinquency
•  Candice Feiring and Lynn S. Taska
The Persistence of Shame Following Sexual Abuse: A Longitudinal Look at Risk and Recovery
•  Claudio Negrao, II, George A. Bonanno, Jennie G. Noll, Frank W. Putnam, and Penelope K. Trickett
Shame, Humiliation, and Childhood Sexual Abuse: Distinct Contributions and Emotional Coherence
•  Esther Deblinger and Melissa K. Runyon
Understanding and Treating Feelings of Shame in Children Who Have Experienced Maltreatment
•  Tamara J. Ferguson
Mapping Shame and Its Functions in Relationships
•  Lucy Berliner
Shame in Child Maltreatment: Contributions and Caveats
•  Index to Child Maltreatment Volume 10

DR Congo's children 'a priority'
Children, who bear the brunt of unrest in the Democratic Republic of Congo, should be top of the agenda after polls on Sunday, says UN group, Unicef.
The Unicef report estimates that some 600 children still die every day as a result of conflict and disease.
Meanwhile, opposition supporters are reported to have stoned a motorcade of incumbent President Joseph Kabila.
A huge UN peacekeeping force is in the country to help it hold its first ever free presidential elections on Sunday.
The war in DR Congo officially ended with a peace agreement in 2003, but conflict continues in parts of the east, and the UN faces what the organisation's secretary general, Kofi Annan, calls a "logistical nightmare" in holding the polls.
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The INDIGO Children (a documentary film)
Who are The INDIGO Children? Have they come to save the world?
Or are they the product of wishful imaginations?
Whatever you call them, (Indigo's or something else) our children are coming into the world with their eyes wide open, ready to play their role in creating a world of compassion and peace. Are we witnessing a major leap in human evolution, what Jean Houston calls "Jump Time?" Many people believe that we are on the brink of a global awakening, and that the Indigo Children are here to show us our highest potential.
In the documentary "The INDIGO Evolution," you hear from leading experts from around the world that this is much more than an imaginary fancy. The Children are real, and they are changing the world. Director James Twyman takes us on a journey into one of the most important questions of our day: "Has the human race finally evolved to a higher reality?"

The Stine Sofie Foundation
The Stine Sofie Foundation is the only organisation in Norway who speaks on the behalf of children who are exposed to violence and abuse. The foundation also focuses on preventing/exposing criminal offences towards children as well as strengthening their position in the legal system.
In the backwaters of two little girls being murdered in Baneheia, Kristiansand in August 2000 the foundation was founded by Ada Sofie Austegard and Bente Bergseth. They both have experiences of violence; Ada Sofie lost her daughter in the brutal killings, while her friend Bente has been through legal procedure twice because of sexual abuse in her childhood.
The main goal of Stine Sofies Stiftelse is to enable children to understand and tell when something is about to happen (prevention) or has happened (expose).
People all over Norway support our work by memberships and gifts to the foundation. This enables us to do an extensive job with information in legal and political arenas as well as in schools and in media where we focus on children's legal rights.
Today we have around 40.000 members.

United Nations: The Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict serves as an international advocate for children affected by armed conflict by promoting standards and measures for their protection in times of war as well as their healing and social reintegration in the aftermath of conflict.

Children of the World
Since 2001, Virginia Swain has been working locally and globally for the International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence for the Children of the World (2001-2010) in Worcester and at the United Nations.

Learning to Live Together: Preventing Hatred and Violence in Child and Adolescent Development, authored by David A. Hamburg and his wife Beatrix A. Hamburg (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004)

Children's Suffrage Executed by Parents and Guardians
Leo Semashko, St-Petersburg Polytechnic University, 2004.
According to Leo Semashko, the most effective way to prevent children's humiliation is to create the institution of Children's Suffrage Executed by Parents and Guardians.

The Natural Child Project
The Natural Child Project's vision is a world in which all children are treated with dignity, respect, understanding, and compassion. In such a world, every child can grow into adulthood with a generous capacity for love and trust. Our society has no more urgent task.

Children First Contra Humiliation
Leo Semashko, edited by Rose Lord (November 2005)

How to Help a Child Become the Good Person Within, Through Encouragement and a Democratic Approach
Aysegül Acar-Dreyer (2005)

Egypt: Child Violence Hotline Inundated with Calls

International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World