Empowerment of Sexually Abused Children in South African Communities

Tasneemah Cornelissen-Nordien, Sulina Green

OBJECTIVE: As child sexual abuse haunts South African communities, this paper aims to present the nature of empowerment services rendered by the non-profit sector for child sexual abuse in the Western Cape, South Africa. METHODS: A qualitative research approach was applied to interview 20 participants at six non-profit organisations (NPOs) who render empowerment services in communities haunted by child sexual abuse. OUTCOMES: Findings of the study indicate that participants execute an empowerment approach by means of a process which entails building relationships, determining goals, identifying strengths, developing action plans, executing plans, attaining goals and ending relationships. The findings also indicate that sexually abused children in South African communities are empowered with micro level intervention to deal with the consequences of their abuse. SOCIAL WORK IMPLICATIONS: Service providers should be equipped to empower sexually abused children with meso and macro level intervention in addition to micro level intervention.

child sexual abuse, South Africa, empowerment services