SEPTEMBER 2013 WINNER

Prosecute Sexual Violence Against Children in Bolivia

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Sexual violence is a pervasive form of violent oppression that is both a human rights violation and a major health risk factor. This broad category of crimes is defined by sexual contact or attempted sexual contact without meaningful consent. These crimes include rape, trafficking into commercial sexual exploitation and other forms of sexual abuse or exploitation.

IJM'S RESPONSE

In Bolivia, IJM conducts casework on behalf of child victims of rape and other forms of sexual violence, and on behalf of women and children victimized by sex trafficking. IJM staff investigate case referrals and collaborate with local officials to secure evidence, rescue victims from situations of ongoing abuse and prosecute perpetrators. IJM ensures that victims of these crimes have access to aftercare services, which provide emotional and physical support for victims and their families. IJM also works to transform justice systems to prevent vulnerable people from future victimization by providing training, modeling and direct assistance to local police, prosecutors and other public justice professionals to build capacity within local systems to respond to these crimes. IJM has also hosted forensics trainings for medical professionals, enabling these "first-responders," to care for victims with sensitivity and professional excellence.

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