Know more about Child SA

2017-03-28 06:03
PHOTO: nosipho mkhizeChildline staff at their offices in Durban.

PHOTO: nosipho mkhizeChildline staff at their offices in Durban.

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THE Childline movement in South Africa was initiated in 1986 with the establishment of Childline KwaZulu-Natal after paediatric staff at Addington Hospital in KwaZulu-Natal noted with concern the number of children attending clinics or hospitalised with non-accidental injury.  Children disclosed that they had no opportunity to report abuse and identified the need for a call centre. 
According to Childline National executive officer Dumisile Nala, in 1988 Childlines Gauteng, Eastern Cape, and Western Cape were established, followed in subsequent years by Childlines Free State, Northwest, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and Northern Cape. “In 2003 it became clear to the then existing provincial offices that a co-ordinating and representative structure was essential on a national level and therefore, Childline SA was established in August 2003.
Childline is a non-profit organisation that works collectively to protect children from all forms of violence and to create a culture of children’s rights in South Africa.
“We are committed to supporting and capacitating the provincial affiliates where needed, develop appropriate social services including a 24 hour toll free helpline and supportive therapeutic  social services for children who have been victims of violence and their families; education and awareness raising programmes facilitating the prevention of violence against children;  establish strategic alliances with the aim of advocating for policy changes that will facilitate good management practices for abused children; research into violence against children within the South African context and on-going training and development of staff members, volunteers and networking partners.”
Childline SA programmes include Crisis Line which is a toll-free crisis telephone counselling line deals with hundreds of queries from children and adults. The prevention and education programme provides information on children’s rights, child abuse, HIV/Aids and responsible relationship and sexual behaviour.  
Training of volunteers and social service professionals are volunteers trained by Childline to assist in providing services, while under the supervision, mentoring and monitoring of professional staff.
“The treatment services to abused children and their families programme includes dealing with families of children who are HIV/Aids infected as a result of sexual abuse. Our online counselling service in the light of the ever growing use and popularity of the internet, and an increase in popularity of online communication, particularly by adolescents, Childline South Africa is keeping up with the times, and meeting young South Africans where they are online.
“Childline South Africa therefore began a pilot project of online counselling in May 2009 in partnership with MXit as the online service provider. Online counselling as a service offered to youth in particular, is already in place and successful in several other countries.
“Online counselling and assistance is offered Monday to Saturday from 2pm to 6pm. The online counselling service is available to South African youth under the age of 21 who are registered on MXit as well as to adults with concerns about children.
“Online counsellors are Durban based and operate from the Childline South Africa National office.”

For more information, contact 031 201 2059.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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