PROJECT Supported by the Republic of Srpska Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports and implemented by the Republic of Srpska Ministry of the Interior Women Network - RS WPON

SENSITIZATION AND EDUCATION OF ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS TEACHING STAFF ON CRIMINAL OFFENCES AGAINST MARRIAGE AND FAMILY

In September 2015, the Republic of Srpska Ministry of the Interior Women Network – RS WPON applied to the call announced by the Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports of the Republic of Srpska. The project concept was designed and drafted by the Network members in accordance with the organization and needs of the RS MoI, i.e. the territories under the jurisdiction of PSC Doboj, PSC East Sarajevo and PSC Trebinje. The project was fully accepted by the Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports of the Republic of Srpska, and the RS MoI Women Network was approved financial resources to implement project activities for a period of 6 months which relate to: publishing a brochure for a target group – teaching staff in elementary schools and organization and implementation of educations.

 

The minister of the interior approved the signing of the project and the implementation of the project activities.

On November 11, 2015 the Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports of the Republic of Srpska issued a Decision approving the disbursement of funds to the Association “RS MoI Women Network – RS WPON” for the project “Sensitization and Education of Elementary Schools Teaching Staff on Criminal Offences against Marriage and Family”. 

About Project

In accordance with the Project, authors were hired to develop a brochure for teaching staff of elementary schools, a brochure was prepared and printed, and a total of 6 educational workshops were organized, which were attended by a total of 85 persons – teaching staff in elementary schools in the following cities: Doboj, Trebinje, Ljubinje, Bileca and Rogatica.

 

The brochures prepared within the project were distributed to the persons attending workshops, as well as to other school staff.

All costs incurred in the project were covered by the grant.

Project target group

The target group consists of teaching staff from 6 elementary schools at the territories of PSC Doboj, PSC East Sarajevo and PSC Trebinje.

 

The specific objectives of the project are:

  • For target group to be able to identify types and forms of criminal offences against marriage and family;
  • Changing target group’s attitudes through acquisition of knowledge and skills presented in educations;
  • Target group empowerment to report crimes to prosecuting authorities if they notice that their students or their family members are victims;
  • Protection of minors – victims of criminal offences against marriage and family through adequate institutional response and prosecution of crime perpetrators.
  • Educations for teaching staff in elementary schools at the territories of PSC Doboj, PSC East Sarajevo and PSC Trebinje.

 

A total of 85 people attended educational workshops under this project – teaching staff at elementary schools in the following cities: Doboj, Trebinje, Ljubinje, Bileća and Rogatica.

A total of 200 brochures were distributed that were published within this project.

Organization of training for teaching staff in primary schools in the territory of the Doboj Public Library, East Sarajevo and Trebinje

According to the Republic of Srpska Criminal Code, criminal offences against marriage and family are bigamy, connivance at contracting illicit marriage, cohabitation with a juvenile, abduction of a child or a minor, change of the family status, neglecting and abusing a minor, domestic violence, breach of family obligations, and evading the alimony.

 

According to the above, it is evident that the most frequent potential victims of these crimes are minors, and Article 221, paragraph 2 of the RS Criminal Procedure Code sets out the obligation for teachers, educators, etc. to immediately notify an authorized person or prosecutor if they find out or if there is a suspicion that a minor is a victim of sexual, physical or other abuse. But despite the normative obligation, OSCE reports show that no charges were filed in BiH for not reporting domestic violence. One of the reasons is likely the lack of information and education of teachers and educators in this field.

Therefore, this type of education can directly influence the prevention and suppression of the listed criminal offences against marriage and family.

In order to reach the expected result of the prevention and suppression of these offences, cooperation between police and school institutions should be strengthened in this way as well.

Conclusions and recommendations

  • The goals of the project have been fully met. Due to great interest, a larger number of educations took place, and a larger number of teaching staff than it was planned initially by the project attended the educations.
  • In addition to introducing teaching staff to the criminal offences against marriage and family and how to act in case they suspect a child is a victim, informative brochures were distributed to the elementary schools where the project was implemented, so that other teaching staff who did not attend workshops would be able to get acquainted with this issue.
  • Furthermore, the contact has been made between the members of police and elementary schools where the project was implemented and it is expected that this cooperation will be even more developed which should result in better criminal protection of children and minors, especially in situations where they are suspected to be victims or witnesses of the mentioned offences.

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