Childline Gauteng gets a line from BitCo[Olivedale, Johannesburg, South Africa, September 2011]
BitCo , a leader in call centre technology and licensed voice operator, has donated a complete call centre solution to Childline Gauteng. Childline as a Non- Profit Organisation has a mandate to protect children from all forms of violence and to create a culture of Children’s Rights in South Africa.
As South Africans were celebrating the birthday of Human Rights icon and former president, Nelson Mandela, the world was implored to give 67 minutes of their time to a worthy cause in honour of the 67 years he dedicated to fight against human rights abuses.
It was auspicious that on this day, Michael Colin and Garth van Sittert the directors of BitCo became aware of Childline Gauteng’s dire need for a call centre make-over. They decided to contribute many “minutes” to Children’s Rights.
Childline was established in 1986 in Kwa-Zulu Natal as a result of rising levels of child sexual abuse. Since inception, other provincial offices have opened with the National Office opening in 2003.
Today Childline actively fights against all forms of child abuse and fights for Children’s Rights – lobbying Parliament, developing social services as well as offering trauma counselling to abused children and their families. z Most importantly they offer a 24 hour free crisis line.
The crisis line deals with hundreds of queries from children and adults. The line, which provides an invaluable service, receives calls relating to a wide variety of issues and problems. These include bullying, harassment, abuse, neglect, teenage pregnancy, divorce, sibling issues, depression and attempted suicide. The Childline toll free number receives approximately 60000 to 90000 calls per month across all the provinces.
Annelie Keyter, head of the crisis line of Childline Gauteng, was actively investigating the market for an alternative call centre solution as they had an out-dated system which was unreliable. Michael Colin of BitCo learnt of their requirements and set up a meeting to conduct a site survey.
Upon investigation it was evident that not only was the system old, but was severely limiting Childline’s mission. When asked what functionality Childline would like to have, the simple answer was, “I would like conference calling as I often need to speak to a child and the police at the same time.” This was a shocking revelation for Colin. “We also found that BitCo would be able to save Childline a significant amount of money if we moved them over to our Communigate PBX and supplied them with a VoIP solution,” reports Colin.
The BitCo Communigate PBX system offers Childline Gauteng unrivalled system functionality. For example, conference calling will enable the organisation to speak to children, police and even a social worker simultaneously. Call recording can aid in court cases and least cost routing (LCR) will dramatically reduce their telephone bill.
Taking into consideration that Childline Gauteng relies on donations in order to operate, BitCo directors Garth van Sittert and Michael Colin met with Lyne Cawood & Annelie Keyter to announce that BitCo would provide a complete call centre solution to Childline Gauteng, free of charge.
BitCo Managing Director, Garth van Sittert concluded, “It was a pleasure and there was never any question about it. When we see how Childline gives children a voice, it is only fitting that BitCo becomes a part that”.
“The famous South African band the Skwatta Kamp recorded the song “Kings and Kweens” together with Childline Gauteng. This great song forms part of the Tomorrow Campaign focusing on vulnerable boys, who are often neglected in campaigns.” Childline Gauteng