On 4 July 2018, the Hope for Children CRC Policy Centre organised a national roundtable discussion for professionals working with children involved in sexual abuse and exploitation. The aim was to raise awareness about the Children’s House in Cyprus and to develop a common approach. Participants discussed the benefits and challenges of multidisciplinary and interagency cooperation, and also true and false allegations of child abuse.

It was agreed that the benefits of a multidisciplinary and interagency cooperation include a holistic and synergistic approach, faster results through direct communication among agencies, and data collection opportunities for analysis, research, and developing knowledge among professionals. Challenges noted that should be addressed through monitoring, evaluation and training included bureaucratic procedures and clarifying the roles of each professional.

A key outcome of the meeting was an understanding that the professionals in the field are specialized and are becoming experts, and that joint trainings lead to a common language and approach.

The main speakers of the roundtable were Professor Gordana Buljan Flander, Ph.D., Psychologist and Psychotherapist, Director of Child and Youth Protection Center of Zagreb and Ana Marija Spanic, Psychologist, from the Child and Youth Protection Center of Zagreb, Croatia. The event had 39 participants from the Children’s House, Cyprus Police, Social Welfare Services, Ministry of Health, Paediatricians from the Public and Private Sector, General Attorney, Lawyers, Supreme Court Judges, staff members from ‘Hope For Children’ CRC Policy Center and Educational Psychologists from the Ministry of Education and Culture.

The roundtable was organised by Hope For Children” CRC Policy Center as part of the PROMISE 2 project.

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