LifeLine/ChildLine Namibia is a registered Welfare Organisation and NGO whose purpose is ‘safer, healthier, more resilient children, families and communities in Namibia’. LifeLine/ChildLine Namibia operates a National Counselling Centre in Windhoek, which handles our different telephone, sms and online counselling services for the whole of Namibia. This includes face to face counselling services in Windhoek, voluntary testing and counselling in three regions and counselling training. This busy centre operates 14 hours per day 365 days per year and handles around 3,000 calls and 1,000 sms per month, the majority of which are from children on our 116 Child HelpLine.
Our HelpLines have expanded into the 116 Child HelpLine (on which sms counselling is also provided) since 2010, and the 106 Gender-Based Violence (GBV) HelpLine since 2015. Our counsellors also do face-to-face counselling when needed. A crisis line (061-232221), which is still in operation today, was set up in 1980, manned by a group of dedicated and well trained volunteers. Furthermore, we complement our counselling services with community-based activities to promote Social Behaviour Change and Child Protection. LifeLine/ChildLine Namibia is supported in these tasks with funding from international donor agencies, as well as local entities and our own fundraising and income generation efforts. LifeLine/ChildLine’s programmes are aligned with Government priorities and national development plans.
In addition to its technical capacity, LifeLine/ChildLine Namibia is also recognised for its robust financial management and accountability. For more than 10 years the organisation successfully managed large donor grants, principally from the US Government and, in 2011, was one of only four local NGOs to graduate to direct funding recipient status in the very tightly managed system of US funding mechanisms.
With Namibia’s status as an upper middle income country now established, almost all the donors LifeLine/ChildLine was funded by in the past either withdrew their support for Namibia or are in the process of doing so gradually. As result, some of the programmes produced by Uitani ChildLine Radio have also been unable to reach popular radio stations in areas such as O-FM (Oranjemund) and Live FM (Rehoboth). In these circumstances, and before it is too late, LL/CL is seeking to mobilise resources to take up the challenge to rebuild and grow vital national services, which international donors have helped to start up.