The Cece Yara Foundation, a child-centred NGO, in partnership with Women
at Risk International Foundation (WARIF) launched the WARIF Satellite Clinic for Child Survivors of Sexual Abuse.
Ms Adetutu Ajibodu, the Chief Executive Officer of Cece Yara Foundation, said at the launch in Lagos on Tuesday
that the clinic would operate at the Cece Yara Child Advocacy Centre in Lagos.
Ajibodu said the partnership was hinged on the need to prevent survivors of sexual abuse from moving from one child
protection agency to another, thereby preventing the retraumatisation of children who have experienced abuse.
She said that collaborating with WARIF was strategic in enhancing service delivery while maintaining focus as
a one-stop response centre for children who experienced sexual abuse.
She added that “there is an increasing rate of child sexual abuse and that is why as a child-centred NGO, we
focused on protection; we have put together all that a survivor needs to heal in one facility.
“What we have done with this is to provide a one-stop centre that provides accommodation, legal, medical,
forensic, psychosocial support services for survivors at no cost.”
According to her, the WARIF Satellite Clinic will give easy access to medical treatment and evaluation
aimed at adducing evidence to corroborate or otherwise, any allegation of child sexual abuse.
She said that the foundation would maintain the partnership with WARIF for technical support and collaborate
with other Sexual Assault and Referral Centres (SARCs) to sustain the operation of the clinic.
“We recognise the importance of partnering with a reputable organisation whose core values are in alignment with our own.
“We have known WARIF to be dependable co-labourers in this delicate field of keeping women and children protected
from sexual violence. It is, therefore, a pleasure to collaborate with them on this project.
“We will continue to partner WARIF for technical support to train more medical personnel in specialised sexual assault
response, use of rape kits, proper documentation of medical report, preservation of evidence, giving expert testimony in court.”
Dr Aniekan Makanjuola, the Centre Manager, WARIF, said the collaboration would ensure that women and child survivors of Gender-Based
Violence (GBV) have access to medical care, forensic examination, counselling and social welfare in Lagos State.
She said that “the WARIF Satellite Clinic located at CeCe Yara is a strategic implementation to offer holistic medical services.
“Beneficiaries at the facility will have access to resources and personnel from both WARIF and CeCe Yara.
“This collective approach will help to achieve the vision of a society free of rape, child abuse, and GBV, as WARIF continues to collaborate
with CeCe Yara and other like-minded organisations to ensure that we achieve this.”
Mr Dennis Onoise, a Child Protection Specialist at the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), lauded both foundations for
providing a one-stop centre for child survivors of sexual abuse “in an efficient and dependable manner.
“There have been cases where parents of survivors get tired of moving from one centre or NGO to another, seeking help and justice.
“This is why having this centre is important for survivors as they will be able to get all the help they need in terms of medical, legal,
social welfare and psychosocial services in one centre.”
Dr Babajide Martins, the Director, Public Prosecutions, Lagos State Ministry of Justice, commended the strategic partnership, saying
it would complement the ministry’s efforts in prosecuting sexual offenders and provide justice for survivors.
He said “we cannot over-emphasise the importance of having this partnership that has birthed this clinic that serves to
provide forensic, medical and social support for survivors of sexual and GBV.
“This will no doubt help in adducing good evidential value to the testimony of the child and getting justice for them.
“We find this initiative commendable and assuring that we curb the menace of sexual abuse in our society.”
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Cece Yara Foundation is a child-centered non-profit organisation established
in 2016 to prevent child sexual abuse and to provide access to care, information, protection, and emergency intervention
for children who experienced abuse or are at risk.
NAN also reports that WARIF adopts a survivor-centered approach to ensuring that survivors get holistic essential
services that include medical care, forensic examinations, counselling, and social welfare. (NAN)