We are happy to announce that I Am Youth has joined hands with the Child Protection Hotline to make counselling more accessible for young people. The Child Protection Hotline is a 24-hour hotline available for reporting child abuse and neglect. They also have qualified counsellors who help young people process some of their negative experiences and maintain healthy mental wellbeing.
We, as I Am Youth, understand that as a young person, you face many challenges that often threaten both your safety and mental wellbeing. You don’t always have someone to talk to, or who can help with the negative experiences you encounter. Through our partnership with Child Protection Hotline, we hope to make it easy and convenient for young people to connect with qualified and experienced counsellors. Use the details below.
You might have many questions; if so, please read through the answers below directly from The Child Protection Hotline.
Simply put, it involves providing professional assistance and guidance in resolving personal or psychological problems.
A healthy mind equals a healthy life. Mental health is extremely important for you to function well in all aspects of life. Sadly, neglecting to maintain your mental health is easy when you associate the need for help with shame and weakness. Therefore, we offer the public a safe space where you can turn while keeping your identity anonymous and make it easy to access by phone.
We know there is a need for our services because before launching it, we received many requests for counselling through the national child protection hotline.
Having a department specifically focusing on offering counselling allows us to act swiftly for those who urgently need support.
We already offer free counselling to schools across the country. However, we want to expand our services to tertiary students and young adults. It is important that you know help is available whenever you need it.
Our team is made up of skilled professionals. We have a wealth of people involved that include but are not limited to:
It takes a village to raise a child, so everyone with a heart for aiding young people works with us.
We are available 24/7 and 365 days a year. We know the system has failed many, and we desire to serve above that.
You are not alone, and if you have been made to feel like no one cares for you, you need to know that we do care. No problem is too great, for we will persevere until we can assist you. Yup, we’re that serious about supporting you.
Yes. Even if you feel your problem is small and insignificant, you should still reach out to us. No one should suffer alone and in silence.
The counselling hotline is for any child and individual under 35 years old. If someone who exceeds this age reaches out to us, we will still assist and guide them in the right direction to receive the necessary services through relevant organisations.
The reporting hotlines are available to anyone – any child, parent, teacher, grandparent, or any other person, to report child abuse, neglect, bullying, trafficking, or any other action that impacts children and youth.
It is paramount that we live for more than ourselves. To be the voice for the voiceless, help the helpless, and provide hope to the hopeless.
Each individual is granted a maximum of 10 free sessions. However, a counsellor will decide when it is appropriate to terminate sessions. Counselling is a journey that is case-dependent, so once you have completed your 10 sessions, you will have the option to contact your councillor again in future if an issue arises again.
Based on your discussion, the counsellor will assess and decide if they can assist you personally. You need to consider that we render services based on our capacity. Therefore, how and when you get assisted depends on availability; in some cases, you may be referred to another person.
The sessions offered through the free counselling hotline will only be conducted electronically via ZOOM, WhatsApp video calls and Microsoft Teams.
In addition, free counselling does come with some challenges regarding the safety of our counsellors. It’s practical to keep all communication online for their protection. Especially since we receive nationwide requests.
If someone wants face-to-face counselling, they will be referred to the appropriate person from our offices. Unfortunately, in-person counselling is beyond our scope and is not free. That being the case, you will receive the fee per session for these upon request.
We first ask for the person’s age, and If it is a minor, we send the child an intake and consent form. The forms need to be completed by a parental figure, and consent is preferred from both parents, provided this is feasible. Where this is not possible, for various reasons, such as the parent being the reason the child needs counselling, we will discuss this internally and decide how best to assist the minor.
This becomes challenging, but we have built the necessary relations with SAPS and other trained professionals to ensure the child does not get turned away, simply because their caregiver won’t consent.
We’ve found an increasingly problematic rise in applicants who lack the basic requirements being rejected. Consequently, forcing them to return to abusive environments to silently endure living painfully without a way out. Nevertheless, we are committed to all who reach out and will find a way to assist.
It depends on the reason a person requests counselling. Applicants are appointed counsellors who can handle their specific requirements. Our professionals are trained and educated to handle all cases, but their specialities vary from trauma counselling, marriage counselling, anxiety, depression and so on.
The counsellors receive a notification of a new case and, depending on their availability and preferences, will depict who takes what case.
They can refer their loved ones to the counselling hotline should they feel they are struggling to cope with something. They can spread the word that help is available, and people do not need to suffer alone and in silence.
They can email or call us if they are a healthcare professional and would like to contribute to our initiative.
Any form of child abuse, neglect, exploitation, malnourishment, or evident danger are clear indications of an intervention needing to take place.
We get involved when we receive a report from any individual regarding a child they are concerned about. We tend to pick up on certain cues when we do educational talks at schools and often alert a teacher to keep an eye out and to alert us if anything progresses.
As an extra measure, we scan social media to identify where our services are needed and try to ensure we launch a child protection hotline for every problem area. This ensures there is a reporting facility that a community can turn to if they ever see a child in need of help.
We know that it can be hard to ask for help. Lots of thoughts race through your mind, but you need to remember that all these thoughts are caused by your brain’s natural habit to ensure you are safe.
Below are a list of a few important words relating to child abuse.
Trauma is an emotional response to a terrible event like an accident, rape, or natural disaster. Immediately after the event, shock and denial are typical. Longer term reactions include unpredictable emotions, flashbacks, strained relationships, and even physical symptoms like headaches or nausea. [APA]
Anxiety is characterised by feelings of tension, worried thoughts and physical changes. Anxiety disorders such as panic disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) cause recurring intrusive thoughts or concerns and physical symptoms such as sweating, trembling, dizziness or a rapid heartbeat. [APA]
Depression is more than just sadness; it is the most common mental disorder. People with depression may also experience physical, cognitive, and social changes, including altered eating or sleeping habits, lack of energy or motivation, difficulty concentrating or making decisions, and withdrawal from social activities. [APA]
Suicidal ideations (SI), often called suicidal thoughts or ideas, is a broad term used to describe a range of contemplations, wishes, and preoccupations with death and suicide. There is no universally accepted consistent definition of SI, which leads to ongoing challenges for clinicians, researchers, and educators. For example, in research studies, SI is frequently given different operational definitions. [NIH]
I Am Youth web radio is the go-to platform for today’s young adults. Our team of young, charismatic influencers is based in South Africa. We produce high-quality content on TikTok social media and YouTube. Our primary goal is to infiltrate the spaces that young people already occupy.