LEARN WITHOUT FEAR CAMPAIGN (LWF) 2008- 2011
The Learn Without Fear was a timely initiative by Plan International on a global campaign with the utmost desire to end violence against children in schools with particular focus on Corporal punishment, Sexual violence and Bullying. It also aimed at creating an enabling and conducive schooling environment for children that will be devoid of violence, Gender Base Violence, Right to education for all children and to put a stop to all forms of sexual exploitation against children in school.
YACAN, being the leading youth and children organization in Sierra Leone, was given the mandate to implement and spearhead this project in the Western Area of Sierra Leone (Freetown municipality) with the principal aim to raise awareness and campaign through intense and active advocacy among children and adult on the aforementioned contending issues. As an organization with the incessant passion and desire to advocate on issues affecting the well being and welfare of youth and children nationwide, YACAN was able to reach children, youth, teachers and other stakeholders through the media by introducing school crusaders clubs against violence and abused and the Pikin Varanda Radio Magazine show.
25 Schools both Junior and senior Secondary schools joined the campaign for three years and 10 communities also supported the campaign as a result of the growing violence among children and youth in schools and at sporting activities with the aim of reaction. Schools, however, agreed that this was among the most successful campaign for children in the advocacy of inclusion on issues affecting children and young people. Over 50,000 people received non-violence messages, testimonies to violence and abused in school as both boys and girls shared their experiences. 2,500 children in junior secondary schools took active role in the campaign between 2008 and 2012, and over 50 teachers received training on guidance and counseling organized by the LWF Campaign in the Western Area.
Although the campaign has ended in Sierra Leone by Plan International, YACAN as an organization still continue to take the positive image that we learned and internalised throughout the campaign period and we have supported and created an environment for children to share their views on issues of abused through the Pikin Varanda Weekly Radio Magazine show and the Quarterly newsletter for children which is a legacy of the LWF Campaign in Sierra Leone.