Methodology and work plan

Overall strategy and general description

The first strategic step will be the creation of an efficient and effective Balkan network of experts on CAN. Each national contact point will, then, create a national team work, which will assist with data collection and mobility of information flow. Next step will be the uniformed training of all partners on the study’s methodology, and the application of the instruments that will be used. Concurrently, all partners will contact their country’s authorities responsible for giving permission to access secondary schools, where the vast majority of the sampling process will occur, as the sample will be constituted by school-aged children between 11 and 16 years old.

In relation to data collection, BECAN is planned to follow a threefold methodological strategy: first, the rate of the reported cases of child abuse and neglect in each of the Balkan countries will be obtained through the collection of information from respectful national child services (welfare, social health, legal and statistical services). Second, a population-based epidemiological study with a randomized sample of 11 to 16-year-old students (and their parents) will be carried out in order to provide information on the extent of the problem of CAN on the general population. Third, a pilot epidemiological study on the rates of CAN in 11 to 16-year-old children that have dropped out school will be conducted. Rates of CAN found in this limited sample of school drop-outs, will then be adjusted to the general population of school drop-outs: ratios of school drop-outs can be easily calculated with significant precision in respect to subsequent age subgroup populations, official figures of school attendance and age subgroup death rates in successor years: then, given the proportion of school drop-outs, and rates of child abuse on children attending and not attending school, one can calculate a quite precise estimation of the overall populations’ rates. Data analysis and dissemination of the results will follow.