In an attempt to improve children’s access to services for victims, the Centre for Justice & Crime Prevention (CJCP) has developed an online platform that links children with their nearest services providers on a 24-hour basis. This platform is called Uphephe, which means “Be Safe!” in Zulu.
The purpose of Uphephe is to ensure that children can access services, such as counselling and support, even if they choose not to make a formal report. The platform links children using keyword algorithms. The platform does not track any identifying details of the child using the site. Once the child has entered basic information on age, gender and the nearest major town, the platform generates a list of the nearest service provider addresses, working hours, a landline, email address and emergency 24-hour number (if they have one). This list can then be printed out or emailed as a PDF.
The platform works as follows:
- The child accesses the platform via a cell-phone or the internet.
- The child enters non-identifying information, such as age, gender, location and what has happened to him/her.
- The child also indicates what steps he/she has taken to date regarding being victimised.
- The child clicks "enter".
- The platform matches the child with his/her nearest service provider, using a keyword-matching algorithm.
- The child is then in a position to make contact with the listed services providers in his/her own time.
Should you wish to register your organisation as a service provider, please use the online form on the CJCP website (under Resources).
Uphephe can be accessed at https://www.uphephe.org.za. CJCP has launched Uphephe as part of Child Protection Week 2016.
CJCP has other child protection-related resources freely available for download, such as training materials, contact details posters and an educational booklet on child protection indicators. These can be downloaded from CJCP’s website at www.cjcp.org.za. CJCP remains committed to making South Africa a safer place for all children.