Data-free app offers a lifeline to survivors of abuse in Diepsloot

Vimba Helpline is an app that will make it easier for abused women and children in Diepsloot to access help.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - A new cellphone app links abused women and children in Diepsloot to care services in the township.

Vimba Helpline is an app that will make it easier for abused women and children in Diepsloot to access help.

The user has to dial 134403# from their cellphone, this notifies a server to send a series of three menus asking them where they are in Diepsloot and what kind of help they need.

An SMS will be sent to the user’s phone containing the phone numbers and addresses of the organisations in the area that help victims, and provides numbers and addresses for the nearest police and ambulance service.

If a user indicates that they have been raped, an SMS containing five things to remember is also sent to them.

The app also functions as a way to collect data; such as the date and time of day users dial the helpline, where in Diepsloot they are and what sort of help they need.

A study released this week revealed more than half of men in Diepsloot admit to having raped or beaten a woman in the past 12 months.

The app will be launched on 30 November and is a free service.