Pregnant and in crisis│ Where to get help

Baby safes, support and help for mothers in crisis

New Beginnings 'Baby Safe' in Albert Road, Walmer
New Beginnings 'Baby Safe' in Albert Road, Walmer
Image: Eugene Coetzee

According to Port Elizabeth activist Dee Blackie, girls who abandoned their babies had been abandoned first by their families and their communities. Instead of supporting these young women, people “shame and blame them and call them sluts and whores.

“We abandon them first,” Blackie said.

There is no quick solution to the problem of baby abandonment but a group of women who are concerned about the welfare of both mothers in crisis and their babies are organising baby safes to be built in Port Elizabeth.

There is one at the Mom and Baby Wellness Clinic in Jeffreys Bay.

Safety mom Elmarie van der Merwe also has one at her home in Walmer.

There are plans to set up some more.

“Once the baby is placed in the baby vault there is an alarm that goes off.

“Baby abandonment is a crime but this is a safer way to do it,” Blackie said.

Blackie, from the National Adoption Coalition, said that there was also a Whats App number for mothers in crisis, 072-521- 3429.

“In your message, just tell us where you are from, then we will send you contact details of organisations that will help you,” she said.

“We needed to create a programme to build strong communities who can engage and understand that a woman with a crisis pregnancy is dealing with issues and deal with them,” she said.