Name of the activity: Viola

Country/NMO: Germany (bvmd)

Program: Ethics & Human Rights in Health

Contact information: [email protected], [email protected]

Type of the activity: Education. Education on health issues for specific societal groups, either in the form of projects (set of tasks for a certain group over a fixed period of time), events (something notable that happens) or conferences (form meeting about ideas related to a particular topic, usually over several days).

General description:

Project Viola is an initiative of the German Medical Students’ Association (BVMD), which demands a sound education for professionals in the health care sector about identification, prevention and treatment of child abuse. For this purpose, we offer free information material and workshops as well as elective courses for students in cooperation with professional partners (e.g. medical associations, children’s rights organizations, etc.). An exchange with other professionals, who deal with child abuse every day like the youth welfare service, voluntary associations, etc. is to be promoted for an optimum interprofessional collaboration.

The project was launched at the 1st annual Meeting of the bvmd 2016 in Heidelberg by SCORA and SCORP.

Focus area:

Children Health and Rights

Problem statement:

Every week in Germany, an estimate of two kids die of the consequences of child ause. Although nowadays there a several groups trying to tackle these issues, we still lack the broad awareness of the severity of the situation, especially in the education of health professionals. One of the problems is the difficult detection of those cases and the lack of knowledge on prevention, sensitive handling and legal rights of doctors concerning suspicion of abuse.

Target groups:

General population, Medical students, Healthcare Students, Other Students, Doctors, Other health professionals


General population, Medical students, Healthcare Students, Other Students, Doctors, Other health professionals, Children

Objectives and indicators of success:

-Awareness:Viola draws attention to the current circumstances of child abuse in Germany. The project aims to stimulate the public as well as the political discussion on this important social issue through events aimed towards the media. Currently there are more than eight committees actively working on this issue and organising workshops or events. The project has already successfully risen some awareness, as it was contacted by different journalists and groups asking for cooperation. Also we saw overwhelming positive feedback after workshops.

-Education: Participants of workshops should learn how to detect and handle children maltreatment. Local Viola committees will organise at least two workshops each year in order to educate approximately 50-100 people of health care professionals in every medical faculty.

-Communication skills training: Since conversation will be an important part in later work life, the project will offer sessions to prepare students for difficult interviews with parents and children.

-Interprofessioniality: We want to establish contact between the youth welfare service, child protection associations, and other groups, who fight for children’s rights.


– Awareness: In order to rise awareness throughout the public and espescially the health care sector we want to organise events and discuss the topic in seminars, interviews with newspapers and congresses.

– Education: For a thorough education of health care students and doctors we want to create workshops that communicate the basics of detection, prevention and treatment of child abuse, as well as sequences of actions in line with the law and consequences from abuse. We accomplish this by inviting professional partners, organising field trips and discussing cases or topics. For a in-depth training we want to teach practical skills as well as communication skills with the help of professionals. In order to give every medical student these basic skills we want to include these topics in medical curricula.

– Interprofessionality: By inviting people from different sectors that work in the field of child abuse and protection, we want to promote the importance of interprofessional work.

Plans for evaluation:

For monitoring the content spread during our workshops there will be soon a general basic presentation available for each committee, which has been overviewed by a professional paediatrician working in prevention of child abuse. There should be an evaluation in form of a questionnaire after every workshop to collect feedback from the participants as well as from the workshop deliverers. Focus lies on the output and the efficiency of the workshops to ensure a constant progress. Based on the outcome, there will be a new strategy enrolled to guarantee continuous improvement. Every year, there is a national meeting of all local committees to discuss the outcome and elaborate a new plan of action. Success and effectiveness of past workshops or events can be evaluated and seen if changes need to be made. For input on recent updates in the field and feedback there should be an expert at the meeting.

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