Antardristi was formed in 2003 to address the social issue of child sexual abuse in Nepal due to the alarming scarcity of service provision in this area. Antardristi remains one of a limited number of organisations working to eliminate child sexual abuse within Nepal and undertakes activities in the areas of awareness raising and prevention, child protection, psychosocial recovery and social reintegration. Undertaking this work is considerably complex. There is stigma around mental health which results in a silence around such problems and consequently increased isolation and unremitting difficulties. There also exists discrimination against young women reporting rape as blame may be placed with the victim. This hinders reporting of sexual abuse and violence and allowing it to continue. Moreover, the hidden nature of these difficulties can make securing funding for intervention a challenge.
Through our activities we aim to ensure access to education about sexual violence, human rights and legislation. This empowers children and women to identify, refuse and report sexually inappropriate behaviour. We also address the mental health of children and women, educating about the signs of mental distress relating to sexual abuse and about support available. We aim to challenge traditional perceptions and break down social stigma relating to both mental health and reporting of sexual abuse through our awareness workshops, family and community work. Furthermore we support women who experience sexual abuse in the development of life skills, educational inclusion and job skills training so that they can go on to live full and meaningful lives and we support children and young women who are suffering mental distress through counselling and outreach.
1. Prevention (Awareness Raising)
Our awareness raising activities currently include educational workshops in schools and with community groups, teacher training, seminars, family empowerment training, student-based dramas, the formation of school peer groups, training programmes for police officers and using links with local media groups to raise awareness on a wider regional and national level. Awareness classes incorporate education regarding what constitutes sexual abuse, indicators of abuse, legal rights and access to support.
2. Protection ( Safe house)
Antardristi also provides counselling services and works with families and local welfare agencies to ensure the safety of the child within the community. Sadly, there are children for whom safety cannot be established or the emotional impact of the abuse is to such an extent that the child’s needs cannot be met within the community. Antardristi provide residential services offering a safe temporary environment with on-going psychological support including counselling, life skills development, recreational activities, educational support and job skills training. Sexual abuse can lead to disrupted cognitive and educational development, and so ensuring access to education is a key target whilst children are in our care.
Antardristi Nepal has only one big safe house in Kathmandu.
Antardristi Nepal is a non-profit organization, and is registered with the Social Welfare Council (SWC). We work in the field of mental health, and aim to empowering youth and children to overcome various psychological problems and lead healthy lives. We are non-political, non-religious and secular non profit organization.
An experienced Psychologist and a counselor. She also works as a Consulting Psychologist in schools in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Working with AN since 2003
12 years experience to deal with sexually abused children.
Anita Gurung Lama