Update on Cambodian Acid Survivors’ Charity (CASC) – April 2014

Cambodia Acid Survivors Charity (CASC) – Phnom Penh
We were happy to welcome Dan Tagliere, the President of the board of CSC, to our members meeting to provide us with an update on the CASC program that New Day funded in 2009 and 2012. The CASC program was established in 2006 as a response to the lack of services and limited medical options for acid burn survivors. CASC tackled the issues involved, with the help of charity partners, in 4 main ways:
1)Surgical, Medical, and Psychological Treatment
2)Vocational Training & Social Reintegration
3)Legal Assistance and Advocacy
4)Awareness raising, research, education, and advocacy to diminish acid violence.
Their efforts have paid off! With the enactment of the Acid Law and Sub Decree in Cambodia in January of 2012, there has been an 83% decrease in acid attacks since 2010. There were 3 attacks in all of Cambodia in 2013. The survivors still need ongoing support but the prevention and advocacy work has minimized the number of future survivors.
To learn more about this successful program, you can see Dan’s presentation here: CASC Presentation Jan2014

Please also find a link to a Cambodia Daily feature on the changes at CASC, accomplishments, and a profile on Bunnarith one of their staff member (and an acid survivor) that ran recently in the paper:

http://www.cambodiadaily.com/features/acid-attack-survivor-once-again-seeking-fresh-start-55825/

 

Update on Cambodian Acid Survivor’s Charity (CASC), October 2012

The operating room at Children's Surgical Centre.

Work at the CASC continues with the provision of surgeries, legal aid and ongoing care for victims of acid attacks.  A central part of CASC’s focus is to advocate for comprehensive laws to prevent these attacks by regulating the sale of acid and prosecuting perpetrators of acid violence.  New Day received the following positive update from CASC Project Manager Ziad Samman:

Acid Law: The Cambodian‘Acid Law’ was passed in December of 2012. However, only the ‘punishment and sentencing’ aspects have been enacted. The details of all regulatory aspects of the legislation are dependent on a sub decree that is currently still under development, therefore the sale and distribution of acid remains unregulated at this stage. However, we have received information from sources in the Ministry of Interior that the sub decree is likely to be finalized and put into effect before the end of 2012.

Legal Cases: In 2012 CASC has had some successes in the court room. Two legal cases went to trial both resulting in the conviction of the perpetrators – one eight year sentence (in absentia), and one 10 year sentence (with the perpetrator in prison). However it is worth noting that these cases did not fall under the Acid Law as they relate to attacks that took place in 2011 before the law was enacted. We are expecting the first legal cases to be tried under the new legislation before the end of 2012. 

Statistics: Over the past 2 years the number of acid attacks recorded has decreased dramatically. In 2010 CASC recorded a total of 26 acid attacks resulting is 43 people being burnt. So far in 2012 CASC has only recorded a total of 6 confirmed acid attacks, four accidental burns, and two suicides by drinking acid, resulting in a total of 13 people being burnt. One can speculate that this is partially due to the development of the acid law, the up scaling of prevention activities (by organizations such as CASC and CCHR), and the increased publicity relating to acid violence issues in the local media.   

 


 

Cambodian Acid Survivors Charity(CASC), Phnom Penh

 

Project : Cambodian Acid Survivors Charity (CASC)

Location : Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Project Leader : Kim Cheung

Contact: kymmi16@hotmail.com

Funding status : Funded

Budget :
HK$51,500.00 (Requested US$6,600)

Corporate Funding Partner : None

Foundation Partner : Referred by Children’s Surgical Center (CSC) in Cambodia

Acid survivors and their children at the CASC Shelter in Phnom Penh

Acid survivors and their children at the CASC Shelter in Phnom Penh

Acid is inexpensive and widely available in Cambodia and its use is not regulated. Acid injuries can be either accidental or intentional, which are often incited by jealousy or rage. Acid can cause extensive damage to skin, tissue, and bone, especially if not treated. Such burns can result in permanent disfigurement and disabling injuries. Victims of these attacks need multiple surgeries, rehabilitation, counseling and reintegration assistance.

CASC (www.thecasc.org) was started in 2006 by its sister organisation, CSC or Children’s Surgical Center in Cambodia. CASC is the ONLY organisation in Cambodia dedicated exclusively to issues regarding acid burns and attacks. CASC provides holistic care to survivors – medical, psychological, reintegration, advocacy and prevention, and awareness raising. CSC started CASC in recognition of the specialist and long term care that acid survivors require.

CASC requires funds for its prevention campaigns, Education and Legal reform programmes. In efforts to stop acid violence and injuries, in 2009 they plan to:

· Educate on the safe use, storage, and transport of acid.

· Educate people on what to do if they are burned by acid.

· Act as a legal intermediary to ensure attackers are prosecuted

· Work with legislative bodies to restrict the distribution and sale of acid and incorporate acid attacks in the Criminal Law Act.

The Projected costs for prevention campaigns, education, and legal reform programmes for the whole year are US$ 6,600. New Day would like to commit to this project for 2009. In our efforts to have a long term impact, we will focus on the legal reform and prevention areas of CASC.
You can download the presentation on CASC to members here casc-pre-to-members-mar-09

The CASC Shelter

The CASC Shelter