The Cabildo de Gran Canaria has launched a Insular Service of Child Psychoeducational Attention for Gender Violence that in its first three months has attended 92 mothers and 130 children from 3 to 18 years old whose main consequences are nightmares, depression and, above all, normalization of violence in all areasbits.
It is a resource managed by the Red Cross with a team of 4 psychologists and 2 social educators with funding of 600,000 euros until 2022 from the agreement between the Insular Institution and the Canary Institute of Equality.
The dynamics are carried out at the Red Cross headquarters in La Aldea, Guía, Teror, Telde, Santa Lucía and San Bartolomé de Tirajana and, in the case of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, at the Insular Youth Center of San Antonio del Cabildo, in addition to coordinating the transfer of municipal offices where the Red Cross does not have its own facilities, explained the Councilor for Equality of the Cabildo, Sara Ramírez.
The face-to-face care began on July 1 and since then its professionals have provided 129 psychological and educational care to minors, as well as 257 aimed at mothers or other close people, that is, a total of 386 sessions.
The specialists apply a gender approach and work on two main lines, the first focused on psychoeducational intervention on the consequences of gender violence that minors present and the second on working with mothers or reference figures to facilitate psychoeducational guidelines and support in their role as a reference “To give them the opportunity to have a full life”, said the director of the Canary Institute of Equality, Kika Fumero.
Experts point out that this global approach is essential because, except in very specific situations, it is important to link mothers in care, since they play an essential role in the recovery of their children, hence they receive support in their own process and in raising awareness of how gender violence has been able to affect minors and reduce their degree of vulnerability, said the president of the Red Cross in the Canary Islands, Antonio Rico.
Psychological intervention with minors uses play therapies, a tool that is not very intrusive to address the symptoms associated with violence in the family, which also manifests itself with trauma and anxiety, highlighted the coordinator of the technical team, the psychologist Gloria Farías.
Both Sara Ramírez and Kika Fumero stressed that the Cabildo and Government of the Canary Islands will monitor the workload of the Service in the face of the possible increase in cases derived from the economic crisis and confinement, circumstances that increase family stress and propitiate the fatal breeding ground for situations of family violence. “If we have to increase the financial and personnel endowment, both parties will agree to do so,” Ramírez emphasized.
Along with the individual and joint interventions of mother and child, who access the service after being referred from the offices of the Insular Network of Attention to Women Victims of Gender Violence, the program includes group sessions scheduled for when the situation normalizes.