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Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini launched a one-stop care centre for abused women and children at the Polokwane Welfare Centre. It is the first of others that will be set up in all nine provinces.
The Khuseleka One-Stop Centre, which will be open 24 hours a day, provides services such as trauma counselling and psychological support, healthcare, police services, legal assistance and shelter for victims of abuse.
The name ''Khuseleka'' is derived from the Zulu word which means protection.
The Khuseleka One-Stop Centre is a ground-breaking initiative of the Department of Social Development. The department started the centre in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and the European Union (EU) under the Victim Empowerment Programme. The programme addresses crimes such as domestic violence, rape, human trafficking and sexual harassment.
Other government departments and organisations also support the initiative. They include the departments of justice and constitutional development and health, the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa and the South African Police Services, as well as civil society organisations.
On the day of the launch, a group of volunteer graduates who completed atraining course in victim empowerment and trauma counseling received certificates. Volunteers are critical in staffing the Khuseleka One-Stop Centre and supplementing the skills of professional staff.
Khuseleka stands as a good example of a partnership between government, development agencies and civil society organisations.