Every day, a child suffers some form of harassment and inhibited by fear, fails to report it. This is demonstrated by the latest statistics on the dramatic growth in the number of victims in recent years.

Since I was 9 years old, I was constantly wondering: What is being done? If there are many governments, institutions, and corporations addressing this issue, how is it that the situation gets worse? For me, the answer was simple: Each and every one of these areas was and, even today is still trying to solve the issue from the point of view of the “adult” or “experts,” but have never attempted to answer it from the point of view of the victim — the kids that, unfortunately, have been abused.

Being a victim myself of bullying, sexual, physical and verbal abuse, I thought of countless ways of how I would have wanted to be helped. That is how I conceived the idea of creating an application for smartphones that targets this problem directly, without a direct confrontation or face to face with the aggressor.

Today, technology is part of almost everything we do in our daily lives and it will be so for generations to come. Accordingly, we considered that this was the ideal place to offer abused children or witnesses a tool that channeled the complaint. With this tool, they can not only capture the evidence in an innovative way, but also denounce such acts confidentially and anonymously with only one click. So, those in the past who, despite having the willingness and courage to report such abuses, feared retaliation, can now do it with the peace of mind offered by this tool. In this original form of reporting.

During my years in elementary school, middle school, and high school, I found it useless to seek help in the faculty because they always made things worse than what they already were. When I reported any of these issues, they always found the slightest excuse to put me in the same guilty position as the aggressor when in reality, I was the victim. Most victims of “bullying” try to defend themselves verbally, but from the perspective of schools such actions make the victim a perpetrator of bullying. This fact complicates the issue, giving the attackers more impunity and incentives to continue their abuses without effective consequences against them. This leads to victims preferring to endure the pain, sadness, abuse, and humiliation in silence and allow the stalker or “bully” to continue, as we found no way to address the abuse without suffering retaliation.

Voice of the Children (VoCH), the application that I created, will be a tool that will help millions of children who are victims of abuse to escape this aberration that every day spreads like an epidemic, and will serve to remind victims that they are not alone.

Sofía Carmona