VAC Benin Ushahidi Project Workflow / Process DocumentationPlan Benin | Paul Goodman | May 30, 2011
Overview VACSMS reports of Benin Awareness violence Ushahidi and Action VAC SMS reports of Benin Awareness violence Ushahidi and Action
Workflow Violence System Management1 Victim / Observer / Advocate: CO Project Coordinator / Intern: • Sends SMS report to Plan CO including name, age, • Responsible for day-to-day operation of the project. and gender of victim, locality, and type of violence. • Monitors system to ensure that messages are being received and forwarded to all actors.2 Plan CO (FrontlineSMS): • Creates reports for incidents outside PUs and works with the Rights of Child Adviser to notify the • Automatically replies to sender. appropriate authorities; updates these reports. • Automatically forwards message to CO PC, PU Focal • Reviews all reports and corresponds with PU Focal Points. Points weekly to ensure timely updating of reports. • Automatically forwards message to Ushahidi. • Prepares analysis for Plan Benin staff. • Leads government relations.3 PU Focal Point ICT Manager: • Creates report in Ushahidi and if credible, approves • Monitors system to ensure that messages are being report. received by FrontlineSMS and forwarded to all • Notifies CPS/BPM, supports investigation of parties and Ushahidi. incident, and updates report with relevant information. • Issues credentials for new users. • Follows up with CPS/BPM. If violence verified by • Maintains latest version of FrontlineSMS and CPS/BPM, verifies report. If report was Ushahidi. false, unapproves report. Updates report with relevant • Supports CO PC with system improvements. information. Program Support Manager: • Responsible for strategic oversight of the project. • Responsible for evaluating the long term success of the project.
Workflow – Individual Message New Message Yes Is it Delete spam? DEFINITIONS Relevant: falls within the scope of this project. Complete: contains location, name of child, and type of No violence. Can also include gender and age. Emergency: requires immediate action. VAC Benin is not responsible for emergency response but should refer cases to No authorities. See VAC Benin guidelines for more information. Is it Ignore relevant? Yes Yes Is it an No Is it complete? emergency Create Report ? No Yes Contact the sender for Contact the appropriate authorities & more information Create Report
Workflow – Report CreationNew Report • Enter a title for the report using language consistent with other reports. • Copy the original message to the private “Original Message” field. • Remove personally identifying information from the description.Complete • Select the categories that the report belongs to. Form • Enter any relevant comments into the private “Comments” field. • Review the message to determine the approximate geographic origin of the message. • Select the location on the map. Use the drop-down menus for help finding the location. • Enter a name for the location. City names are fine and the names of nearby cities can be used for Map small villages. Report • Check for any mistakes. • Verify that no personally identifying information is visible in the public fields. Review • Determine if report is ready to be approved or verified (see next graphic for more information). Report
Workflow – Report Approval & Verification New Report Approved Report Has it been No Is it ready No investigate Do not approve to be Do not verify d by Plan public? or gov’t? Yes Yes Approve According Unapprove & No to staff or add comment gov’t, is the with relevant report information genuine?DEFINITIONSReady to be public: contains location, type of violence, and Yesany other relevant information. Does NOT contain name ofvictim or information that could identify the child.Approve: publishes the report to the public VAC Benin site.Verify: signals that Plan Benin has reason to believe the report Verify & add comment withis accurate. Information from government authorities or Plan relevant informationBenin staff are sufficient to warrant verification.
Workflow – Privacy ChecklistInformation that Plan Benin can publish on vacbenin.ushahidi.com:• Gender of child• Age of child• Approximate location of incident (e.g., City X)• General description of violence including category and any pertinent factsInformation that Plan Benin cannot publish on vacbenin.ushahidi.com:• Exact location of incident (e.g., Ecole X)• Victim’s name (first or last)• Name of any other person included in message• Other information that could potentially reveal the identity of the parties involved
• Violence against children• Although the UN CRC places the responsibility of child protection on duty bearers, and specifically the state2, many children are still victims of violence in Benin. Estimates in 2007 indicate that 40,317 children were victims of trafficking (of which 86% are girls residing in Benin). This figure represents 2% of the total children in Benin between 6-17 years old. In 2008, approximately 598,521 children were subjected to the worst forms of child labor (e.g. breaking stones, mining, use of pesticides in farms, working in construction, etc.)• Girls and women also face additional gender-specific forms of violence that includes: Female Genital Cutting (FGC), early and forced marriage, abusive speech, confinement, sexual harassment, rape, trafficking and child murder (especially in the northern part of the country). For example, amongst females between ages 15-19, 8% were subjected to FGC in Benin in 2008• Figures for child marriage suggest that 2 % of children between 10-17 years old are married (0.4% for boys and 3% for girls). By the age of 15-17, this rate rises to 5.2 % for both sexes, with a huge gap between boys and girls (at 0.7% and 10.8 %, respectively).• Given the vulnerabilities of children with disabilities as well as Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVCs), they are most likely to be victims of violence. The particular vulnerabilities of these groups of children are compounded by a general lack of education, traditions that are unsupportive to child rights, and poverty. There is also a conspicuous absence of children’s organizations that can give voice to children’s perspectives in Benin.• Studies conducted by Plan Benin have revealed other causes of child violence not commonly cited in development literature, such as: the destruction of family unity, the weakening of traditional solidarity, and the non-participation of children and women in the decision-making process, as well as growing importance of money in social and interpersonal relationships.
• Violence against children• Moreover, the government resources allocated to child protection services are inadequate and not well managed at the state level. This is further compounded by a wide-spread ignorance of laws and regulations and a lack of laws specifically safeguarding female children against violence and corporal punishment at school. Key actors, including NGOs who support child rights, are largely unaware of quality standards and the government’s• commitments to the international community. Nor are private sector actors called upon to account for their obligations with respect to child rights in their economic activities, and, as a result, children become easy prey of economic exploitation.• The situation analysis conducted by Plan Benin also brought to light serious gaps in the nation’s response to the wide-spread scourge of violence against children in spite of the existence of a ministerial department dedicated to ending all forms of violence. These gaps in addressing violence can be explained by the state’s general lack of: awareness of children’s rights, financial resources, expertise and technical skill on relevant human rights• instruments as well as the inadequate institutional frameworks to effectively coordinate a variety of responses at country level. Critical issues such as child trafficking, gender-based violence and the protection of children with disabilities are also largely overlooked in the current response.