GSK supports project to combat child abuse in Sri Lanka
Saturday, 14 December 2013 00:00
Sponsors launch of ‘Creating Safe Communities for Children’ initiative of the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians
A significant initiative by the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians to combat child abuse through better awareness of the problem has been launched with the support of GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals (GSK), a leading supplier of pharmaceuticals and vaccines in Sri Lanka.
Titled ‘Creating Safe Communities for Children’ the project involves the launch of multi-sectoral guidelines for the management of child abuse and neglect, as well as a program of activities for the protection of children from abuse, exploitation, violence and neglect.
As principal sponsor of the launch of this initiative at the BMICH on Wednesday 4 December, GSK Pharmaceuticals bore the cost of the event, and supported it with a country-wide poster campaign intended to create greater consciousness about protecting children.
GSK also dedicated its 2013 ‘Orange Day’ – a day set aside by the company globally each year to encourage staff engagement with local communities – to mounting a series of purpose-designed posters at public places such as hospitals and police stations around Sri Lanka on 4 December to complement the efforts of the Child Protection Committee of the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians (SLCP).
Speaking at the launch of the SLCP initiative, GSK Pharmaceuticals Managing Director Stuart Chapman said: “In Sri Lanka, the focus of GSK’s corporate social responsibility commitments is the welfare of children. We are aware that the incidence of child abuse in our country is a cause for concern, and are impressed by the approach being taken by the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians to address the problem. GSK is therefore happy to support the college’s efforts with funding and through the company’s Orange Day activity.”
Chapman said GSK, the largest investor in the country’s pharmaceutical sector, has also been the most significant contributor from the pharmaceutical industry to community development in Sri Lanka, where over the past three years alone, the company’s community investment has exceeded Rs. 100 million.
Eye catching drawings
As the launch of ‘Creating Safe Communities for Children’ got underway, teams made up of more than 150 employees of GSK Pharmaceuticals, who were given a paid holiday on that day, engaged in mounting the posters as part of the company’s ‘Orange Day’ activity for 2013.
Five different posters have been designed to engage parents and children with simple messages on safeguarding children. Eye catching drawings were produced for this activity under the guidance of the Child Protection Committee of the Sri Lanka College of Paediatricians with funding from GSK. The posters are in English, Sinhala and Tamil.
‘Orange Day’ is a term coined to be in harmony with GSK’s corporate colour and is about making a difference in countries where GSK is present. It also contributes to team building among employees and facilitates interaction with the community. The Orange Day initiative provides employees of GSK an opportunity to personally contribute to the company’s corporate mission of improving the quality of human life by helping people to do more, feel better and live longer.
GSK and its predecessors have been doing business in Sri Lanka since the late 1930s. A world leading pharmaceuticals and vaccines company, GSK is the only pharmaceuticals company to tackle the three ‘priority’ diseases identified by the World Health Organisation (WHO): HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.