Fifteen percent of these cases involve sexual abuse and early child marriages.
Speaking during the handover ceremony of the new Childline call centre in Bulawayo which came through the support of the Australian Embassy, Taru said on a daily basis they receive over 1000 calls.
“On a daily basis we receive over 1000 calls every single day for example between 12 midnight and 11 am, we have already received 347 calls and the number will increase especially if we get into the afternoon when some of the children have left school where they are now able to access phones,” said Taru.
“We get between 15 and 20 000 cases every year because calls are just a number of calls that come through the call centre but then we categorise them according to what is required. In terms of the calls that then translate into violence cases, we receive between 15 to 20 000 cases every year.”
She added, “These cases are then categorised according to the type of abuse that is happening, around 15 percent of those cases are sexual violence cases, children are being raped, children are being molested and we also have incidents of child marriage that we receive through the call centre.”
Taru said the numbers are continuously increasing every year,
“The numbers continue to go up, so where we would receive 11 000, the following year the number will go to 12 000 and as of last year we were now recording around 15 665 cases per year of children that are being abused,” she said.