In response to this urgent consequence of the pandemic, WARIF has implemented safety planning protocols to provide assistance to survivors in need of help. These protocols designed and implemented by the organization to protect both adults and children are aligned with the recently released set of procedures by the UN (the Technical note: Protection of children during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic) to keeping children safe while the pandemic lasts.
Dr. Kemi Da-Silva reassures survivors that WARIF is positioning itself to be able to provide virtual assistance even as the novel COVID-19 virus ravages the country. “We anticipate an increase in the number of sexual violence cases against women and children as they are forced into quarantine with their abusers and we have devised safety protocols that include the use of our 24-hour confidential help line, text services and social media platforms; as these remote services offer immediate assistance whilst upholding the safety and anonymity of our survivors”. She added, “The whole world may feel like it has stopped but for that brave young girl or child in absolute isolation and abject fear – it truly has. We at WARIF are here for all survivors and want them all to know that they are not alone. We are also working with a select group pf police stations across Lagos to ensure that survivors can report cases of abuse through our services to a station closest to them with an assigned officer and receive responsiveness from the law.”
WARIF advocates that while self-isolating, in quarantine or working remotely, everyone should observe their environments carefully and report all cases of abuse or attempted abuse using its 24hour confidential helpline 08092100009 or send a message via twitter or instagram @warif_ng.