A fully networked camera solution provides visibility and accountability, letting orphanage focus on what’s important – its children.
According to the South African Child Gauge Report of 2018, millions of South Africa’s children are still hungry, 40% have had multiple experiences of violence in their homes, schools and communities, and over four million children don’t live with either biological parent.
The statistics are dire, but there is a beacon of hope for these children through organisations such as Give a Child a Family (GCF). Based in Kwa-Zulu Natal in South Africa, the organisation is a child protection organisation promoting the rights and wellbeing of children and works to the belief that children have the right to grow up in a family.
Many of the vulnerable children in the care of GCF are orphans and have experienced risks to their survival, protection and development, including poverty, abuse, neglect, exploitation, and lack of access to essential services.
Some of the children have been removed from very abusive homes and are kept in the sanctuary of GCF which is part of the reason the organisation required the assistance of a robust network of cameras that could provide onsite and remote surveillance, security and oversight of its environment.
It is with this that Axis communications stepped up to the plate and donated a fully networked and functional system for GCF.
Technology helps accountability
The diverse requirements of GCF were met by Axis with a donation of 15 cameras, that included indoor and outdoor units as well as cameras with audio so that incidents could be recorded in their entirety, monitors, cabling and switches.
Cameras donated include the Axis P3215-VE Network Cameras; Axis P1354 Network Cameras, Axis M3004-V Fixed Dome Network Camera for indoors and Axis P3225-LVE Network Cameras optimised for forensic video. The system is fully networked and includes an upgraded server to host the video footage on for an extended period.
“The biggest need we had, spoke to the fact that we provide the children in our care protection,” said Charmaine Wagenaar, Director Support Services at GCF.
“As a place of safety, there are always external risks that threaten this sanctity, such as parents who have been denied access to their children come and try snatch the children back. Secondly, our property had been subject to crime, where people were breaching our perimeter.
“Thirdly we needed accountability amongst our staff, so that they were aware that they were being watched and to give them the assurance that we had evidence of potential incidents in the environment, so we could protect them if needed. You could say that Axis came to our rescue with their donation.”
A team from Axis did the initial visits to the property, identified the needs of GCF and then appointed partner 3 Core Electrical to assist with the installation. Using a combination of newer cameras as well as encoders, the team was also able to provide smart features to legacy equipment.
Cameras were placed at all the entrances and allow for both number plate and facial recognition, and now also boast low light capabilities with the Axis Lightfinder technology. This provides the GCF team much needed ‘eyes at night’.
The new server placed on site can store more than 60 days of recordings, allowing the team to retain footage for investigative purposes. The system also supports remote login and management capabilities from a mobile phone, and GCF’s global funders based in Sweden, can access the environment at any given point to monitor the environment.
A lot of time was spent by the team of GCF tracking items throughout the home, now with the Smartsearch feature from AXIS Camera Station, staff can search for specific items, identify when it disappeared and from where, without looking through footage for hours. The interface of ACS allows GCF to map events and then follow their sequence, switching between cameras and pinpointing or accessing a camera in the exact area the event is occurring.
The children who matter
“Accountability is quintessential when you have children in your care, and our new camera system ensures we can eliminate any potential wrongdoing, food is distributed properly, and if there is an incident with a parent, we have the footage as a record,” said Wagenaar.
“We are absolutely delighted, the investment by Axis and 3 Core Electrical and the donation they have made to GCF is phenomenal. The team was professional and courteous throughout the entire time it took to install the system and the quality of the installation outstrips the calibre of our old system.
“It is also exceptionally easy to use, I am not technical at all, but I can navigate through it with ease. I don’t know what investment they made into our organisation, but I can only imagine it was huge, I just want the team to know that the benefits we are receiving from the new system definitely justify their investment and we are eternally grateful.”