Forget that it’s called a Command Centre. You don’t need to like them for their excellent service, high call rates, or raise your eyebrow because Vodacom is partnering government on this project. Actually, it is a laudable thing for big business to consider gender based as a social scourge. I don’t know what a call centre will do to bring down level of violence in society. Even then, we need every kind of support to deal with violence and its aftermath. So, memorise that number, put it in your phone, share it: 0800 428 428 or dial *120*7867#.
Here is the write up as received from government about the call centre:
OUTCOME 3: ALL PEOPLE IN SOUTH AFRICA ARE AND FEEL SAFE
CALL CENTRE A LIFELINE FOR WOMEN
- In trying to address the scourge of gender based violence, the Department of Social Development, in partnership with the Vodacom Foundation, is piloting a 24-hour call centre dedicated to provide support and counselling to victims of Gender Based Violence (GBV).
- The command centre will allow social worker agents to provide telephonic support and counselling and can direct the victim’s case to a social worker in the following pilot areas – Gauteng (Hillbrow, Moroka, Sunnyside, Akasia, Alexandra) and KwaZulu Natal (Edendale and Inanda).
- The Command Centre is working in collaboration with the South African Police Service (SAPS), allowing calls to receive priority and be escalated to a police station nearest to them where necessary.
- The Command Centre will be launched on Sunday 23 March 2014.
- Minister for Social Development, Ms Bathabile Dlamini says the Command Centre is aimed at making the Department as responsive as possible to gender based violence.
- The toll-free number for the GBV call centre is 0800 428 428 or dial *120*7867# (free) from any cellphone and a social worker will call back.