Abused children - what can we do?

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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Firewolf » 29 May 2002, 08:38

Dear Hartzell,
I saw a topic about abused kids on tealit and thought you might know where one can find help, or which course of action should be taken.
A lot of foreigners out there don't seem to give a damn and seem to think that this is the "Taiwanese way of doing things".
Any advise?
Regards [img]images/smiles/icon_sad.gif[/img]
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Juba » 29 May 2002, 08:48

Firewolf wrote:...abused kids...A lot of foreigners out there don't seem to give a damn...

What gave you that idea? Did you do some kind of survey?
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Firewolf » 29 May 2002, 09:03

Hey! Just take a look at Tealit, okay, before stomping on the warpath?
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Juba » 29 May 2002, 09:39

Well, I've just had a look over that forum on TEALIT (On child abuse and some people's perspectives) - it doesn't look to me like the people posting there don't care about the problem - far from it! Only that there are some differing opinions about how to deal with it.

One item of interest in the forum is the idea that Taiwanese children may be either completely spoiled or abused. One day on a train to Keelung (Jilong) I saw a mother stuffing food into the mouth of her very obese son. Clearly, the mother was satisfying some kind of psychological need of her own, not her son's hunger. I saw a similar scene once in Naples, Italy, where a woman was force-feeding a screaming baby with ice cream. Would that fall under the category of spoiling or abuse...or both? I would say it was abuse, for sure. I didn't intervene in either case. Should I have?
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby maoman » 29 May 2002, 11:01

Juba wrote:One day on a train to Keelung (Jilong) I saw a mother stuffing food into the mouth of her very obese son. Clearly, the mother was satisfying some kind of psychological need of her own, not her son's hunger.

That reminds me of the time I had a bit part in a local movie starring Hao Shaowen, the child actor known for his chubbiness and apparent willingness to display his "Xiao Di-di" on camera. At lunchtime, this 7 or 8 yr old kid is fed by his mother and when he protests that he is full after polishing off one bian dang, she scolds him and forces him to eat another one. Clearly she knew that his fat gut was her meal ticket, and if he ever got healthy, they would lose income. Apparently skinny Taiwanese kids aren't as cute and funny as fat ones. The kid was weird too. Blank, glazed over expression, except when the cameras were rolling and then he became super exaggerated in all of his movements and speech. That kid is going to be in need of counselling in a few years when he realizes that girls aren't interested in lard-asses. Wonder how mommy dearest is going to fill his needs then? :roll: :eek:
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Juba » 29 May 2002, 11:22

You mean the kid who plays the little monk? He must be in his early teens by now.

How about that shy little orphan boy Iruan Ergui Wu from Brazil who was so blatantly manipulated by his Taiwanese uncle in front of the news cameras? He was put to work soon enough, making money for his Taiwanese relatives by appearing in TV ads. A few months ago, Taiwan's news media were buzzing around the boy like a swarm of bluebottles - Now the whole story seems to have been forgotten. I guess the boy is still in Taiwan and his grandmother is sitting helpless over in Brazil - anybody know?
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Hartzell » 30 May 2002, 06:59

I read through the tealit forum at
http://www.tealit.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=119

If you want to do something, I suppose you could volunteer to do various services at local orphanages, or in Sunday Schools, etc., although technically such volunteer services, for those without an ESA Article 51 work permit (of categories 1,2,4, or 5) is illegal.
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Jennifer » 30 May 2002, 09:02

I think maybe Firewolf was asking what we could do to help a child who we suspect might be abused. Is there an agency here (like Child Protective Services in the US) where we could report suspected abuse? Or a number people can call?

There is always the worry though, that people will make reports that end up doing more harm than good. I happen to know an American family with three very active girls. They each had broken arms from falling off of trees, jungle gyms. The youngest at the time that I met them was only four and had her arm in a cast for the second time. If I didn't know the parents were very gentle people, I might have suspected abuse.

I think rather than looking for an agency to call, the teachers who really want to help should look at what happens at the schools where they work and see how they can help change things.


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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Juba » 30 May 2002, 09:24

<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, Geneva">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Hartzell:
<strong>...you could volunteer...</strong><hr></blockquote>

Anybody interested in volunteer work with young people might be interested in my girlfriend's organisation, the Nook Care Association. It provides employment training in catering, plus creative activities like dance and drama, for high school students with learning difficulties.

Now Richard has got me worried that I might get deported for helping them out with washing dishes, wiping the tables and other such illicit work. Even worse, I am teaching one of the girls Hanyu pinyin as a first step towards learning English and she pays me a whole pot of tea each time. To be sure, if the Taiwan authorities decide they want any foreigner off the island, they can probably find something we are doing that is illegal.

Nook Care Association (Jiaoluo Guanhuai Xiehui),
3F, No. 12, Sec. 3, Chengde Rd., Datong Dist., Taibei 103
Tel: 02-2599 4235
Fax: 02-2586 7049
(Over the footbridge from Minquan MRT station on the Danshui Line)

Note: Most of the people there can't speak much English.

The association runs a cafe on the ground floor at the same address - see some photos on http://www.bigmap.net/food/coffee/26.htm

My girlfriend also has connections with a lot of philanthropic organisations related to disabled people etc. One of the well-known child welfare organisations, concerned principally with preventing child prostitution, is the Garden of Hope Foundation. Its bilingual web site is at http://www.goh.org.tw/
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Abused children - what can we do?

Postby Bu Lai En » 30 May 2002, 09:45

I just read that topic. Is your question what to do if/when we someone beating their child?

I agree that we should do something. What are the options? Call the police? Physically try and stop it? Verbally intervene? Start beating on the beater?

I don't really know. I think if your Chinese skills are less than superb any verbal interference in such a volatile situation is difficult. I wonder if calling the police is much use. Maybe. At least in Taiwan, unlike some countries, people do seem to get charged with abuse. I guess a natural response would be to physically intervene, but I'm thinking maybe that would make matters worse if the attacker took it out on the child later.
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