Building the capacity of Child Welfare Committee Members

19-22 August 2019

The Women and Child Development (WCD) Department, Government of Maharashtra entrusted IJM with the responsibility to conduct a CWC Refresher Training for existing CWC members in August 2019. IJM, with UNICEF and the WCD to organize the training from 19th to 22nd August 2019 at YASHADA, Pune, for members from all 39 CWCs in the State of Maharashtra. The training was imparted to 144 CWC members by 24 experts in child protection and care. On the final day of the training 36 Data Entry operators were provided with specialised training in data management, reporting and documentation. The training focused on topics identified through a survey of the CWC members, 16 topics were delved into across the 4-day training.

“The training for the CWCs by the DWCD with IJM and UNICEF was extremely useful for all CWC members. I am extremely impressed and inspired by the work of IJM and I believe we need more such organisations to take this work forward.” said Dr. Hrishikesh Yashod, Commissioner of the Women and Child Development Department, Maharashtra State, after the Training, on 22 August 2019 at YASHADA Pune.

Since 2018, IJM has partnered with the WCD Department to establish child friendly CWCs in Mumbai. This year, after the successful development of three such CWCs in Mumbai and Ulhasnagar, one more has been established in Nagpur at the Government Shelter Home for Boys, as of June 2019. By the end of 2019, a child friendly CWC will be established in Pune as well.

The objective of the CWC is to provide custody and care to vulnerable and abandoned children. The child friendly CWCs are thus developed based on requirements as per the Juvenile Justice Care and Protection Act 2015. A friendly atmosphere is developed through infrastructure changes with a warm reception room, a separate CWC meeting room and a special area for individual counselling. In order to effectively use this space, it is essential for all CWC members to have the procedural and emotional knowledge to manage cases that come before the. For this the capacity of CWC members are build through legal trainings, trauma sensitivity and counselling sessions and knowledge sharing with experts from the field. The CWC refresher training was an opportunity to provide a standardized training to all members, and ensure uniform processes were being implemented across the state.