Thirteen year old Kannitha is a resilient girl. She is one of many girls in Cambodia who are victim of sexual abuse. With support of the Cambodian Woman Crises Center (CWCC) Kannitha could leave her trauma behind. She is now going to school and dreams of a career as a teacher.
Kannitha, 13 years old, was raped by a neighbour in 2011. At the time she was playing near her small wooden-house and the village condition was a little quiet. Her neighbour, a man aged around 43 years old, then approached and took Kannitha to his brother’s house in the same village. There was no body in the house during the day. There Kannitha was tainted and threatened to seal her mouth on the incidence.
can stop thinking of what happened
to me on the day
Kannitha (13) from Cambodia
After a while, Kannitha became anxious and feared of what she went through. She decided to tell her older sister which soon after, the story came to her mother’s ears. Her parents, furthermore, filed a report on this rape case to the police officers, with the help of CWCC. Whilst proceeding with the legal court, Kannitha was referred to the CWCC safe shelter to receive the counselling and psychosocial sevrvices in order to leave her trauma behind. Kannitha stayed in the shelter for 2 years from 2011 to 2013. “Now I feel that I can stop thinking of what happened to me on the day,” says Kannitha after receiving regular counselling sessions for 2 years.
Kannitha and her family were also relieved and happy to know that the perpetrator was sent to prison. It all happened due to the hard work of CWCC team in building the justice throughout the nation. Now Kannitha has earned a new skill of souvenir making from the shelter. She is now continuing her study in her village after being reintegrated at the end of 2013. Kannitha enjoys Khmer Literature at school as she believes that it teaches her to live in peace. She hopes to finish her school and to become a teacher in the future.
Violence against women and children is a daily reality in Cambodia. Women and children face various challenging issues in their communities which include, but not limited to, domestic violence, sexual abuse, human trafficking and access to education for girls. Every day many fall victims of rape, sexual exploitation, harassment and other forms of violence throughout the country. To prevent these problems from taking place in the future and support the survivors to get back to normalcy, Terre des Hommes Netherlands and Cambodian Women Crises Centre (CWCC) undertake a series of protection measures from raising awareness widely and setting up the support service programmes through shelter, scholarships as well as campaign.