Building Regional Resources in Tripura – Aarambh’s TARA Initiative

“ঠিক আছে” (Bangla for okay) with an occasional nod, was the time to time intervention by more than 65 social workers representing 13 organizations who had gathered to become a master trainer under TARA – The Aarambh Regional Alliance. It was an acknowedgement that they were with our master trainer Uma Subramanian and determined to go back to all the 8 districts of Tripura and make a difference in their communities.

On 12th and 13th June 2017, we kickstarted TARA – our process of building regional resources across India to tackle the issue of sexual offences against children in Agartala, Tripura. Supported by British Asian Trust, it is a safety network which will be formed across the country through trainings and capacity building of regional organizations in areas where access to resources and awareness on the issue of protection of children from sexual offences is limited. The Tripura leg of TARA was organized in association with Voluntary Health Association of Tripura (VHAT) and saw the participants trained in basic CSAP module and handling disclosures.

Although all the participants were working with organizations that dealt with children and were aware of the issue and prevalence of sexual abuse around them, they weren’t sure about how to respond when an incident came to light. Throughout the two days of training, they shared their problems and incidents of CSA along with dollops of enthusiasm and determination to get things right once armed with the resources and knowledge. Training material, presentation and key resource materials were translated in Bangla for a better connect with the audience.

Two hours on the second day were allotted for organizations to come up with an on-ground plan of action which they would execute in their communities. From awareness programs to staff and panchayat training, a number of strategies were shared which the organizations were determined to complete in a two month period. Post this, a Phase II training consisting of POCSO law and working on cases of CSA will be conducted with these master trainers. Even after the scheduled training phases, the idea of TARA is to provide sustained support to communities, organizations and institutions in other fields to create effective and efficient systems and services for children locally and nationally.

Next stop under TARA – Odisha.

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