FEARING
WRONG
global views on violence
against children

WorldVision and Ipsos Reid conducted research around the world to better understand public attitudes and perceptions about violence against children and how to protect them. Before conducting this study we knew surprisingly little about variations in attitudes between countries and regions and gaps in people’s understanding versus what we know from data about actual incidence of violence.

The study sought to understand the attitudes and beliefs that shape perspectives on violence against children around the world. In some cases, the attitudes and beliefs expressed in responses to the survey questions closely reflect the realities of violence committed against children. In many cases, they do not. Understanding public opinion in this area can help World Vision and other organisations address harmful myths about violence against children that can frustrate solutions.

76%
know of a child
victim of violence

Globally, more than three quarters (76%) of people know of a child victim of violence, and nearly one third (30%) know one personally.

PREVALENCE

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, 49% of people personally know a victim of child violence

Do you know anyone who has been a victim of child violence?
To compare results by age, region and gender please use the dropdown menu below

I have heard about violence against children in my community

I personally know victims of violence against children

I am not aware of any violence against children in my community

Percent respondents in each country who personally know a victim of child violence

Percent who personally know a victim of child violence

Developed Nations
Developing
Fragile States
MICs


Globally, more than three quarters (76%) of people know of a child victim of violence, and nearly one third (30%) know one personally
The majority of people (62%) believe the problem has increased in their country over the past five years, and nearly half (45%) feel that not enough is being done to punish those who commit violence against children

IMPACT

Hover over the graphic to see
respondent percentages

To compare results by region please
use the dropdown menu below

How much impact do forms of violence have on children in your country?
(Respondents who answered "very high")

World
Economic Region
62%
believe violence
against children
has increased

The majority of people (62%) believe the problem has increased in their country over the past five years, and nearly half (45%) feel that not enough is being done to punish those who commit violence against children.

FREQUENCY

In El Salvador, 87% of people believe violence against children has increased in the past five years

Has violence against children become more or less frequent?
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Child violence has become more frequent in the past five years

There have been fewer incidents of child violence in the past five years

I don't know

Percent respondents in each country who believe violence against children has increased in the past five years

Percent who believe violence against children has increased

Developed Nations
Developing
Fragile States
MICs


Over 80% of those from lower and upper middle income countries feel that the government has a responsibility to protect all children and take steps to prevent violence, while only 69% in developed countries think this
Ending violence against children requires all of us to change the way we see and understand it. Children should be growing up in safe, nurturing environments, free of fear and free to fulfill their potential.

This is achievable if all schools, places of worship, parents and governments step up their existing efforts to stop violence against children

CAUSES OF CHILD VIOLENCE

Hover over the graphic to see
respondent percentages

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use the dropdown menu below

Abuse by past victims, substance abuse and lack of knowledge seen as the top causes of violence against children
(Those who "strongly" and "somewhat" agree)

World
Economic Region
55%
think something is
being done to prevent
violence against
children

Over 80% of those from lower and upper middle income countries feel that the government has a responsibility to protect all children and take steps to prevent violence, while only 69% in developed countries think this.

ACTIONS

In Pakistan, 71% think not very much or nothing at all is being done to prevent child violence

How much is being done to prevent violence against children?
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A lot

Something

Not very much

Nothing at all

Don't know

Percent respondents in each country who said not very much or nothing at all is being done to prevent child violence

Percent who believe a lot is being done to protect children

Developed Nations
Developing
Fragile States
MICs

79%
believe violence
will be reduced in
the future

Ending violence against children requires all of us to change the way we see and understand it. Children should be growing up in safe, nurturing environments, free of fear and free to fulfill their potential.

This is achievable if all schools, places of worship, parents and governments step up their existing efforts to stop violence against children.

FUTURE

In Nicragua, 93% of people believe violence against children can be reduced in the future

Which best describes your view about violence against children?
To compare results by age, region and gender please use the dropdown menu below

If people work together, violence against children can be reduced and eventually eliminated in the short term.

Violence against children is common and cultural, it will take generations to address

Percent respondents in each country who believe violence against children can be reduced in the future

Percent who believe violence against children can be reduced

Developed Nations
Developing
Fragile States
MICs

Based on the picture this survey paints, combined with the reality we know from our work with children affected by violence across the world, WorldVision believes violence against children can be ended. But this requires governments to invest in proven strategies that work in partnerships with communities, families, religious institutions and civil society. These strategies include:

1.  Challenging the attitudes, beliefs and traditions that perpetuate and tolerate violence against children. No adult in a position of power should be willing to accept violence against children on their watch.

2.  Governments demonstrating their commitment to ending violence against children by implementing laws and policies that protect children from all forms of violence.

3.  Supporting families, parents and caregivers to protect and care for their children, by investing in parental support programmes and support services for children and families at risk.

4.  Empowering children so they can make themselves safer. Governments and communities need to recognise the key role children can play in preventing violence and not see them only as victims or perpetrators.

5.  Ensuring every child has someone and somewhere to turn to when things go wrong.

6.  When violence against children is discussed in media and social media, governments, NGOs and those in positions of power working to create a more realistic, positive and solutions-oriented public conversation.

Click here to download the full report
Or click on a flag to find filtered information concerning the results in your country