NATION

Signing Stamps Global Partnership

The Child Helpline will soon provide an access point for all children in Fiji to seek counselling, advice, referrals to services and to report abuse, says Rosy Akbar. The Minister
05 Dec 2014 08:20
Signing Stamps Global Partnership
From left: The Permanent Secretary for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Dr Josefa Koroivueta, Medical Services Pacific executive director Jennifer Poole, Craig Smith of Digicel, the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Rosy Akbar, Divik Deo of Vodafone and Mothilal DeSilva of TFL during the signing of the MOU on Child Helpline in Suva yesterday. Photo: Rama

The Child Helpline will soon provide an access point for all children in Fiji to seek counselling, advice, referrals to services and to report abuse, says Rosy Akbar.

The Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation made the comment yesterday during the signing of the child helpline memorandum of agreement.

The signing was with the Medical Services Pacific, Digicel, Telecom Fiji Limited and Vodafone.

“Today’s (yesterday) signing is a step closer to the establishment of National Child Helpline,” Ms Akbar said.

This, she said would further bring to surface child abuse and to break the silence on child harm and neglect.

“Child Helpline International is the global network of 191 Child Helplines in 145 countries which together receive over 14 million contacts a year.”

Medical Services Pacific executive director Jennifer Poole said: “This child helpline will make an easy access for children to report abuse in a confidential and safe manner.”

Vodafone chief financial officer Divik Deo said: “This free helpline is to ensure every call made by a child is answered thereby safeguarding their right to be heard”

Telecom chief executive officer Mothilal De Silva said: “Children will be able to use technology which will enable them to reach out and protect themselves when they need care and support.”

Digicel Fiji head of Information and Communications Technology, Craig Smith said: “No child should ever be denied access to help and support because he or she cannot afford it.”

Minister Akbar said membership of Child Helpline International would mean international recognition for Fiji’s child helpline as well as expert level support and resources.

Ms Akbar said callers would be able to use a short code toll free phone number which was 1325 to contact the helpline with the cost of the calls being covered through project funding.

She said as articulated in CRC, Article 12 provided for the right of a child to be heard.

 zafiya.shamim@fijisun.com.fj

 




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