By Blackson Mkupatira – Mana.
Mulanje District Social Welfare Officer (DSWO), Martha Mkisi has hailed the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) for donating nine bicycles and one motorcycle to the Council to enhance child protection work.
In an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Monday, she said the Social Welfare Office receives over five cases of child abuse per week, noting that it was becoming a challenge to follow them up as most of the cases happen in remote areas.
“Children in the district suffer from various forms of abuses like early and forced marriages, defilement and child labour. The district registers a high school dropout rate,” Mkisi said.
“Therefore, to protect them and raise awareness on the dangers of such abuse to development; we are doing a number of activities at village level. We were facing mobility challenges and now we will be to do our work effectively,” the DWSO added.
She commended UNICEF and the Chinese Government for donating the bicycles, adding that they would motivate child protection workers and volunteers to do a good job.
A Child Protection Worker from Traditional Authority (TA) Mabuka, Dyson Gundaphiri said the bicycles have come at the right time because they were failing to reach out to many of their clients because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“With the bicycle, I will now be able to visit the communities even in their respective homes and follow up child abuse cases,” he said.