Why monitor violence against children?

Children have a right to nurturing care and protection from harm and maltreatment so that they can grow and thrive. But many children across the world face violence every day - in their homes, schools, and communities.

Monitoring violence is the first step to developing effective policies and programmes to prevent violence against children. But much violence goes unreported for many reasons: because of fear, or a lack of faith that reporting will result in change; a child may not understand or be able to report due to their developmental stage; and often different forms of violence - such as physical punishment, bullying or sexual harassment - are seen as 'normal'. Differing definitions and insufficient reliable routine data add to the challenge of monitoring violence against children.

On this site you will find statistics on the levels of violence against children in South Africa, based on the best available data. You will also find information about the location of relevant services using interactive maps. This site is part of Children Count, an ongoing Children's Institute project monitoring child rights. Click below to find out more.

Levels of violence

Children have a right to be free from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation. Monitoring violence is necessary for informing effective policies and programmes for response and prevention.


Risk and protective factors

A focus on risk and protective factors allows us to identify areas for reducing and preventing violence against children. Prevention requires not only reducing risks, but also strengthening protective factors and supporting children and families in various contexts.


Mapping services

Parents, families and communities play an important role in protecting children from harm. When these layers of support fail, the state is ultimately responsible for upholding children's right to protection. This map shows the spread and location of selected services.


Pilot districts

This section explores the possibility of mapping indicators and the location of relevant services at a district level.It also considers whether services are located where children live.

© 2018
Children's Institute University of Cape Town
Supported byFirst National Bank