New app to support children in South Sudan

35330474735 32bf812b01 zUNICEF, Save the Children and a network of child protection organisations have launched a new online database and application to better protect children in emergencies

The application has the ability to take photos and record audio and aims to enable hundreds of field workers to trace families in South Sudan and share information on their phones.

The app contains a database of child protection cases, which can be updated and monitored in real time by frontline caseworkers, removing the need for paper-based work while in the field. This app will reduce administration time, giving case managers more time to support vulnerable children.

Rama Hansraj, Save the Children’s Country Director in South Sudan, said, “Caseworkers are the backbone of everything we do. They walk for hours and hours under the scorching sun, wade through mud, and travel for days on bumpy dirt roads to knock on doors and make sure children are safe.”

“They are in every corner of South Sudan, yet until now have found it difficult to communicate with other caseworkers on the other side of the country. With this new app, we’re bringing their work into the 21st century,” she added.

The app and online system is being launched along with the first case management handbook for caseworkers, which provides step-by-step guidance to field workers on how to manage vulnerable cases, including how to talk to children to reduce trauma, how to assess child and family data, and the steps to be taken to ensure that high-risk children receive the specialised support they need to survive and recover.

Andrea Suley, UNICEF South Sudan deputy representative, added, “The handbook is the first of its kind and has the power to change children’s lives. Caseworkers are often on their own in some of the most remote and dangerous areas in South Sudan.”

“With the book, which is practical and easy to use, they always have a mentor in their hands, helping them provide essential, timely and often life-saving help to some of the most vulnerable children in South Sudan,” she concluded.

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