"This is to ensure that victims and survivors receive timely care and support when they need it most”
VICTIMS of gender-based violence and those fleeing from abusive and violent relationships will receive care and support when the White Door Centre of Hope opens its doors in Seoding Village in Kuruman today.
The Deputy Minister of Social Development, Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, will officially unveil the centre.
Department spokesperson Jaconia Kobue said that the Seoding White Door Centre of Hope is one of 250 centres established by the department to support victims and survivors of gender-based violence (GBV) at a ward level in communities throughout South Africa.
“The centres are directly linked to the local police stations and serve as referral points for victims and survivors of GBV. The White Door Centre of Hope is a localised victim reception centre that is located as close to the community as possible. It provides a 72-hour service response and safe space that victims and survivors can access in their own local communities. This is to ensure that victims and survivors receive timely care and support when they need it most,” said Kobue.
He added that the opening of the centre was a response to the president’s emergency action plan on gender-based violence and femicide.
The plan includes the prevention of GBV, strengthening the criminal justice system, enhancement of the legal and policy framework, provision of adequate care and support for victims and survivors and the economic empowerment of women.
The centres are linked to a Gender-Based Violence Command Centre (GBVCC), which is a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week toll-free hotline that renders psychosocial care and support services.
Callers to the centre can be assisted in any of the country’s 11 official languages.
In addition to the toll-free line (0800 428 428), the GBVCC has an SMS functionality for text messages and a call-me-back functionality.
“The centre also caters for persons with speech and hearing impairment through Skype. These functions ensures that there are no boundaries for those in need of assistance,” said Kobue.