Cape Town - The vulnerability of children under the age of 14 travelling in vehicles has been highlighted by a donation of 17 car seats to social work organisations.
As we commemorated World Social Work Day yesterday (on Tuesday), statistics have revealed that child pedestrians and child passengers make up 62% and 36% of road fatalities respectively.
This is according to the Road Traffic Management Corporation(RTMC) 2020.
The donations were supplied by Childsafe, an injury prevention unit NPO based at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital and the Road Accident Fund(RAF).
Ricki Fransman from Childline Western Cape said car seats are very important.
“Having a car seat will help create further safety measures for the vulnerable children. They are vulnerable because of their size and they also don’t have a voice,” he said.
Executive Director at Childsafe, Zaitoon Rabaney, said it was important to recognise social workers for their selfless giving.
“They are individuals who engage people and structures to address life challenges and uplift individuals and communities to enhance wellbeing. This is part of the global definition of the social work profession.
“Today we celebrated our social workers who are working mainly in the child protection services with our celebratory function. These individuals deal with child abandonment, child abuse, child safety, child placement and many other interventions where the child, family and communities are concerned.
“Children are using the roads with vehicular transport modes. The roads in most of our most underprivileged areas are not conducive to children walking safely on sidewalks which in turn make the walk on our roads more dangerous for the child. This makes them more vulnerable. Road safety education plays a big role in making our children more aware of safe use of the roads. Not all roads have traffic calming mechanisms in place to make it easy for a child to walk or travel on any road in a safe way,” she said.
Chief executive at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, Anita Parbhoo, said: “An appropriate child restraint reduces the chances of a serious injury or a road fatality by 80%. Do not hold your child on your lap as it offers them no protection. Always buckle-up even for short trips”