As a UN Volunteer, Shoko Fujita from Japan assists UNICEF in assessing and monitoring child well-being in Timor-Leste.
With UNICEF's Child Protection Team, Shoko works on crime reclassification in line with Timor-Leste Penal Code by developing common data collection tools to register criminal cases involving children. This new tool is a case tracking system that helps coordinate child protection action from different actors including the Vulnerable Persons Unit of National Police Timor-Leste (PNTL) and the Ministry of Social Solidarity.
Shoko travels throughout the country conducting interviews with members of child protection networks to prepare for a nationwide advocacy campaign to raise public awareness of childrens rights in 2012. As a result, she raises the importance of disseminating information at the suco (village) and aldeia (town) levels in order to encourage incident reporting to authorities.
I expect that the campaign will help children understand their right to access social and legal services, she says.
Currently, she is organizing the World Day of Prayer and Action for Children (DPAC) on occasion of Universal Childrens Day on 20 November 2011. This event is a global initiative to mobilize religious communities to work together for children's well-being. It will be a starting point for building networks to protect children from all forms of violence, she stresses.
Shoko enjoys a fulfilling experience in Timor-Leste: What I like most about going to the districts is to meet children living there; photos of those children with shy smiles are treasures to me.
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