Sunday, February 10, 2013

Working towards healing, protection and prevention is the Catholic Church across the world responding to the problems of sex abuse and child protection? 

That was the subject of a conference at Rome’s Gregorian University on Tuesday evening – exactly a year after the first ever Vatican sponsored symposium for church leaders dealing with the clerical abuse crisis.

Participants presented the full proceedings of the 2012 three day symposium which was attended by bishops from a hundred countries around the globe. 

They also outlined the work of an online child protection and awareness programme being rolled out across Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America, especially in countries with scarce resources to tackle this crucial training work.

Philippa Hitchen spoke about this e-learning programme with Jesuit Fr Hans Zollner, Dean of the Gregorian’s Institute of Psychology and head of the steering committee at the Centre for Child Protection…..

"First of all we're happy we can present 12 language editions of the proceedings of the Symposium....we have 6 major West European languages and 6 East European languages and I'm happy especially that we can offer a resource for countries where the discussion about abuse will start or has only started recently....

Secondly, we present the results of the visits of our co-workers in different countries with project partners of our Centre for Child Protection, which we founded here at the Gregorian one year ago - it's an e-learning platform which is still in the experimental phase...already we have many requests from countries, dioceses, institutions which want to participate....

Certainly we have very encouraging signs......we work with various people, for example in East Europe with people at state level also who look forward to having an instrument which could be a very helpful tool for preventing abuse...

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