As bullying continues to be an ongoing issue, affecting Jamaican children in schools, child care institutions and the wider society; the Child Care and Family Protection Agency (CPFSA) will be hosting a two-day workshop, aimed at building the capacity of stakeholders to mitigate against the negative effects of bullying on victims.
Organised by a Technical Working Group, comprising various stakeholders the event is being held at the Police Officers Club, located at 34 Hope Road in Kingston, on Wednesday and Thursday, (February 20 and 21, 2019), commencing at 9:00 a.m.
Additionally, the workshop seeks to bring together the various stakeholders to further identify and assess intervening variables that contribute to bullying, following a study undertaken in 2015 by the CPFSA, formerly the Child Development Agency (CDA) in collaboration with the Anti-bullying Technical Advisory Committee (ABITAC).
The study was done to investigate the prevalence and impact of bullying on the development of Jamaica’s children
Referring to findings from the study, CPFSA’s CEO, Mrs. Rosalee Gage-Grey said that bullying is indeed a pervasive issue that requires national attention and action.
“The Agency in collaboration with its partners is working to address this growing problem in keeping with the work of the Agency. Our function involves the care and protection of vulnerable children, so it is therefore vital for us to get a deeper understanding of the phenomena of bullying effectively to address it effectively, in schools, child care institutions and the wider society, in a practical manner; hence the reason for the workshop,” CPFSA’s CEO said.
The workshop begins with an opening session and includes a number of presentations from the CPFSA and the Ministry of Justice on the Child Care and Protection and Cyber Crime Acts, respectively.
Other presentations will come from the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Anti-Bullying Community Safety and Security Branch; Corporate Planning Analyst at the Real Estate Board, Mr. Randell Bailey and children who were victims of bullying
The CPFSA with the support of its partners will continue to work assiduously to develop new policies and programmes to tackle bullying as time progresses.
The Family Life Ministries (FLM) and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, through the Child Protection and Family services Agency (CPFSA) will sign a Service Agreement, aimed at expanding the National foster care programme.
This initiative, which will be spearheaded by both the FLM and CPFSA, seeks to improve the delivery and operation of the programme; through private-public partnership to increase recruitment, improve service delivery management, and treatment programmes for children, parents and caregivers.
The three-year project, titled, “For the Child Foster Care Programme” will see year one as a pilot phase, which will be reviewed during the projected time span.
Through this partnership, the FLM will be working with the CPFSA to identify, recruit, assess, engage and notify the CPFSA of the prospective foster families for application processing.
Also, the FLM will also have responsibility for the management of service delivery to the children placed in their family network.
On the other hand, the CPFSA, through their efforts will continue to promote the Programme, using the pre-establishment matching criteria for appropriate placements.
Also, the Agency will have responsibility to review; process and monitor foster care placements within the Family Life Ministries network.
Chief Executive Officer of the FLM, Dr. Barry Davidson said that his organisation is pleased to collaborate with the CPFSA in establishing and implementing a new foster care option that will provide a healthy family placement for at risk children in our society.
“The expectation is that our collaborative efforts will create greater opportunities and positive life outcomes for these children in need of care and protection. We will recruit, train and monitor highly competent foster parents as well as continually monitor the progress of the children placed in their care” Dr. Davidson said.
He also adds that in keeping with the mission and vision of the FLM, his team will actively promote healthy family life through regular training and counselling programmes, for foster families.
“In this way we will cultivate the creation of happy home life and the holistic development of the children placed within these families. We look forward to working with the CPFSA team in monitoring, evaluating and improving the service to foster parents and children for the duration of the programme,” the FLM CEO said.
Commending the FLM for their partnership, CPFSA’s CEO, Mrs. Rosalee Gage-Grey said the Agency welcomes the partnership whole-heartedly; which will indeed assist in strengthening the National Foster Care Programme, with the hope of reducing the over 4000 children currently in State care.
Underscoring the relevance of the Programme, Mrs. Gage-Grey said that over the years, the Agency has been placing great emphasis on the Programme in an effort to up the ante of the Programme through various initiatives, so persons can be inclined to foster a child/ children.
Mrs. Gage-Grey expressed that the church plays a vital role in the society, adding that, “Organisations such as the FLM has the synergy and willpower to promote and uphold family values, which makes them ideal partners to drive the expansion of our flagship foster programme,” she said.
Foster care is an essential component of the Agency’s Living in Family Environment (LIFE) Programme, a process by which persons open their homes to children on a temporary basis, providing them with a stable and nurturing environment, which contributes to their holistic development.
Contact: Miss Rochelle Dixon/Miss Jeneva Gordon
Public Relations and Communications Manager/Public Relations Officer
Tele: 876-967-5905 or 876-469-4100/876-558-7134