First Step Cambodia is a non-governmental organization with the primary goal of ensuring that all Cambodian children are protected from sexual abuse and that all those affected by abuse are supported and enabled to reach their potential. Applying the socio-ecological model, we achieve this goal by addressing the issues of child sexual abuse on the individual, family, community and societal levels simultaneously.
We work on prevention and protection in schools and communities, developing the capacity of professionals working with children, providing counseling and direct support to children affected by sexual abuse, conducting research and advocating for societal change.
Today, First Step Cambodia is identified by local and regional organizations as a leader in the provision of direct services to both boys and girls. It remains the only organization in Cambodia specialized in giving support to boys who are survivors of sexual abuse and to children displaying sexually harmful behavior, as well as their families, caregivers, supporters and communities.
Until the development of First Step’s specialist services, nothing of its kind existed in Cambodia. Through our advocacy
efforts, capacity building of professionals working with children in Cambodia, and our close
collaboration with partners and government, we are beginning to change beliefs that are
considered taboo, every day improving the responses given to boys when they need or seek support.
We strive towards a Cambodia in which all children live and grow up in a safe environment and are able to fulfill their potential.
FSC applies the Socio-Ecological Model, a model that considers the complex interplay between individual, relationship, community, and societal factors.
The model allows us to understand the range of factors that put children at risk for violence or protect them from experiencing or perpetrating violence. The overlapping rings in the model illustrate how factors at one level influence factors at another level. The model also highlights the importance to act across multiple levels of the model at the same time. This approach is more likely to sustain prevention efforts over time than any single intervention.
Our programs are aligned with this approach and are designed to tackle the issues of child sexual abuse on all levels in society simultaneously. In 2019, FSC was selected as a promising practice by the Family Care First network.
We increase the understanding, knowledge and awareness of child sexual abuse, especially boys, among Cambodians at all levels of society. We develop educational resources and tools, which we deliver in a range of workshops and forums to both children and adults. We strengthen reporting mechanisms and raise awareness in our NGO and national networks.
We provide specialist training,
learning and consultation
opportunities to improve the capacity
of professionals to ensure they deliver quality services to children and families
affected by sexual abuse, harmful
sexual behaviors and psychosocial
issues. We lead and contribute to
research related to child sexual abuse
and sexually harmful behavior.
We provide social work services that
are appropriate and sensitive to
children who are at risk of or affected
by sexual abuse, and children
displaying SHB. We build on the
child’s strengths and apply the Social-
Ecological Model, engaging with the
children’s families, supporters and
community, making them an integral
part of the process.