Everyone must join hands to protect our children

Each and every child in the safe care of a responsible adult (whether that be at a day or afterschool centre, with a day mother or in foster care) is a success story to Badisa, one of South Africa’s largest child protection organisations. During 2013 Badisa had more than 13 000 stories of such success when thousands of children were saved from abuse, neglect or mistreatment and were given a new opportunity in life.

“Safe care give young children the opportunity to adapt better when they eventually end up in school or in the community, especially children from disadvantaged communities,” explains Ronel van Zyl, Badisa’s Director: Social Services.

Child Protection Week was commemorated between 1 and 8 June 2014 and several organisations are using the opportunity to help focus attention on child protection and show that everyone has a moral obligation to fight these crimes against children in communities.

Media giant Media24 and The Body Shop, the international beauty and skincare product retailer, are taking part in the 2014 project. The two companies have joined forces to provide a much-needed converted ship container-class room to pre-schoolers in the small town of Saron near Tulbagh in the Western Cape.

Media24’s Chair, prof. Rachel Jafta, supports the project and has agreed to be its patron. “Saron is close to my heart, that’s where my family’s roots are,” she says.

The new classroom was delivered to the centre on Thursday 5 June and volunteers from Media24 also helped to paint one of the centre’s other classrooms and give it a makeover.

The Saron day centre is managed by the social welfare services organisation Badisa. The increase in needy children has resulted in dire shortages of school facilities at the centre.

Child protection forms part of Badisa’s daily agenda. The organisation regularly presents child protection programmes and activities in communities. Visit www.badisa.org.za for more information about their projects or phone the nearest Badisa office to join the fight against child abuse. The telephone numbers are available on www.badisa.org.za. Click on the website’s “DONATE” option if you are able to offer financial support.

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