Empowering Child Protection: Inauguration of Helpline Unit and Open Shelter in Leh District

On November 14, the inauguration of the Child Helpline Unit and Open Shelter took place at the District Child Protection Office, officiated by Tashi Gyalson, Chief Executive Councillor of the Hill Council, Leh. The event was attended by key figures, including Spalzes Angmo, Member Secretary of Ladakh Legal Service Authority; the Principal Magistrate of Juvenile Justice Board; the District Social Welfare Officer of Leh; and the Officer-in-Charge of Women’s Police Station Leh.

During the ceremony, CEC Tashi Gyalson emphasized the critical role of the Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) Dial112 helpline in addressing social issues and child abuse, underscoring the importance of protecting children. He also highlighted the necessity of educating children about the detrimental effects of drug abuse. Commending the efforts of the Social & Tribal Welfare Department in Leh, particularly the implementation of programs like Mission Vatsalya, he expressed the Hill Council’s commitment to providing assistance, especially in offering quality education to underprivileged students from economically weaker backgrounds.

Spalzes Angmo underscored the significance of familiarizing students with the child helpline number, emphasizing its potential as a lifeline for those in need. She stressed the perpetual availability of the helpline and called for collaborative efforts among stakeholders, including the Legal Service Authority, DCPO, NGOs, and the Police, to prioritize child protection.

District Child Protection Officer Nilza Angmo provided insights into the Child Helpline Service, explaining that it caters to children experiencing stress or problems. She highlighted the dual function of the helpline – serving as the universal emergency number (Dial 112) for immediate concerns, which are addressed by the relevant department, and as a non-emergency channel for the District Child Protection Unit to take further action. Additionally, she mentioned the provision of counseling and support services for children in need.

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