Ntcheu District Social Welfare has given child protection workers 27 bicycles to ease their mobility in the district.
Presenting the bicycles on Thursday, Ntcheu district social welfare officer Mike Makalande said his office was registering high child abuse cases during this time of Covid-19 pandemic as schools remain closed.
“Children are facing various all sorts of abuse that need urgent attention; hence, the bicycles will ease mobility challenges that child protection workers face when conducting their duties,” he said.
Makalande said the district has registered 27 cases of child abuse since January.
“This is the highest number compared to 12 the district registered during the same period last year,” he said.
Cecilia Paul Shisha, a parent, said it was challenging to control children as they are not going to school.
She said: “Many children are indulging in risky behaviour because they have nothing to do.
“Some parents send children to sell things in markets where they get abused.”
Mark Chatsika, a child protection worker, said the bicycles will help them follow up on child abuse cases in hard-to-reach areas.
“There are many cases of child abuse ranging from defilement to maltreatment in homes which go unreported, but the bicycles will help us ensure that these cases come to light,” he said.
United Nations International Children Education Fund (Unicef) donated the bicycles to the government of Malawi.