The eighth award for the best Zagreb volunteer was held in the City Hall. The winner was a long time volunteer of the Brave Phone, Matej Ilić Buljan. That was the decision of citizens who elected him via electronic voting on the internet web page, or at the headquarters of the Volunteer Centre Zagreb, or even by sending their votes by snail mail, between 30 January and 19 February 2017.
Last Wednesday in February – Pink T-shirt Day – is marked as National Day of Fighting Against Peer Violence, with the aim of raising public awareness of violence among children. In the Center this day was dedicated to children from the Daily hospital with the Head of the Daily hospital, Domagoj Štimac, MD, psychologists Renata Ćorić Špoljar and Ana Raguž and chief nurse Ivana Ivančić. On the occasion of the celebration of the Pink T-shirt day, the children also made a poster on which they wrote their ideas, thoughts and messages related to the topic of violence among children.
We talked with children about what is considered as violence among children, how children who experience and commit violence feel. We also talked about how to respond, what is the role of the observers of violence, to whom they can talk to, the difficulties that may arise on the way of disclosure. Also, differences between common conflict among children and violence among children were discussed.
Children agreed that violence among children is always a matter of violence, whether it is a physical punch, physical injury or vilification, insult, ignoring, rejection or humiliation because such behavior affects the child to feel uncomfortable, injured, disappointed, sad, angry, that is, worthless and disliked. Also, children told us that their words sometimes hurt more than punches because they stay written deeper inside.
We have discussed that neither adults nor children can or should expect children to deal with violent situations alone, but should be encouraged by us adults to talk to parents, experts, teachers or other close adults on any form of violence they see or experience. Children will confide in adults when they see them as supportive, as those who strongly disapprove of any form of violence and, ultimately, as those who are prepared to protect and help them.