The Drakenstein Child Protection Programme is uniting local organisations to empower, uplift, educate, and raise awareness during May for Child Protection Month and Child Protection Week from 27 May to 4 June 2018.

Various organisations that form part of the Drakenstein Child Protection Programme are acting as a united voice, implementing updated group policies, hosting training workshops, implementing child-focused campaigns, running projects to raise awareness and wearing and displaying the symbolic green ribbons, to name a few.

A focus for the month is also to celebrate the very first World Foster Day on the 31st of May jointly pioneered by Kibwe Kids and Kin Culture with the aim to create awareness for alternative care in South Africa and to get people involved with this important issue.

It is one thing to talk about and to empathise with the vulnerable children of our community, but it is another to actually act on it. This month we call on organisations, businesses and individuals to convert our words into deeds. Whether it is to wear a green ribbon, educate yourself on the topic, volunteer your time, pray or donate financially. Everyone has a role to play,” says Ivan Swartz, CEO of Valcare.

Hope in collaborative solutions

In 2017 six local non-profit organisations came together to form the Drakenstein Child Protection steering group, coordinated by Ezrah Community Training and Development. This initiative is one of the many coordinated efforts powered by the Impact Funding Platform, Valcare, striving to activate and enable social change in community.

The programme works collaboratively on prevention and early intervention strategies, establishing champion organisations and by taking hands with local child protection services and stakeholders. They also form part of the Connect Network’s Safe Community Strategy with the goal to establish ten safe communities within the Western Cape.

When we hear about the children of our nation and community getting harmed through neglect and different types of abuse or even murder, we feel a deep sense of grief. But there is hope in finding collaborative solutions together,” says Mariëtte Jacobs, Managing Director of Ezrah Community Training and Development and Project Manager of the Drakenstein Child Protection Programme.

Taking action through initiatives 

The Drakenstein Child Protection steering group members are Khula Development Group, Salt and Light, Paarl Youth Initiative, Kin Culture, Ezrah and Valcare.

These are some of the initiatives that they are activating during May 2018:

– Khula Development Group is launching a project in ten local schools to create awareness on the impact of bullying on children and how this may contribute to early school dropout. The participating schools will go green, while guest speakers will address the topic of child protection. Additionally, some schools will train their staff in handling bullying, while children from Grade R to Grade 7 will participate in art competitions.
– Salt and Light Children’s School Discipleship’s The SALT dream team will perform an anti-bullying drama during the month. They are also raising awareness in schools and Early Childhood Development centres by going green and running programmes.
– Kin Culture and Kibwe Kids are pioneering World Foster Day on the 31stof May through a creative social media campaign.
– Ezrah Community Training and Development is hosting a Child Participation Workshop on the 18thof May 2018.
– Valcare is funding the Drakenstein Child Protection Programme and co-hosting the Child Participation Workshop with Ezrah.

For more information or to organise interviews, please contact:
Leani Jansen van Vuuren
Communication & PR
leani@valcare.org.za

For 10 Ways to Raise Awareness for Child Protection Month, click here.