International Childcare Trust

International Childcare Trust (ICT) believes that all children, regardless of socio-economic background, have the right to enjoy their childhood and reach their potential. We partner with local grassroots NGOs in Africa and Asia - managed and staffed by local people - that protect children's rights. We combine the delivery of practical assistance with capacity building and advocacy initiatives because we take responsibility for building sustainability into the projects/partners we support.
Nov 21, 2012

Unexpected results and challenges!

Earning an income while enrolled in training
Earning an income while enrolled in training

Have there been any unexpected results so far?

A significant challenge that has arisen is ensuring the teenage girls can meet their living costs while taking part in training e.g. rent, bus fares to the training centre, food, and childcare costs.  This has meant that once or twice a fortnight 15 of the trainees are still engaging in sex work to make ends meet.  Shalom has therefore decided to provide them with entrepreneurship and business skills training, as well as start-up capital (£12-20), to enable them to establish small income generating activities, which could be carried out without interfering with their studies.  These include selling second hand shoes and clothes; making and selling juice; selling snacks and fish; and making and selling charcoal.  This will enable them to earn a small amount of money to cover their bus fares, rent, food, and childcare costs.

Has the project reached any community members, which it had not initially planned to reach?  

The project initially planned to support one hundred children in Year 1 but reached five additional children with disabilities, providing them with uniforms and school materials in order for them to attend school.  They have been enrolled in a special education class in Ngaramtoni Primary school; Shalom hopes to mainstream them in the future.  On seeing these children attend school and following ongoing sensitisation about disability within the community, the parents of 10 other disabled children decided to enroll their children in Ngaramtoni Primary school.

Have there been any particular challenges in including marginalized children within the project?  

As Shalom has only just started to sensitise the community on the rights of children with disabilities through meetings, home visits and the radio programme, there is still much stigma, discrimination and marginalization of people with disabilities throughout the community e.g. many parents still hide any children with disabilities and they are still believed to be bad omens.

Oct 29, 2012

New Day Care Centre established!

International Childcare Trust has working in partnership with Muloma Women’s Development Association (MUWODA) since 2011, supporting ‘Empower 840 Women & Children in Sierra Leone’. 

This project aims to protect and empower over 1,000 disadvantaged and war-affected children and youth in Sierra Leone through provision of vital services, knowledge and skills, including training in nutrition and crop production for mothers, vocational training for youths, and awareness raising on child rights within the community.

So far, with the donations we’ve received, MUWODA has been able to establish a Day Care Centre, which will provide care, play and pre-primary education to up to 30 children aged 1-6 each year.  This will give young vulnerable mothers, who previously had to stay at home and care for their children, increased opportunity to find employment and improve their socio-economic conditions.  The donations have specifically been used to furnish and equip the centre and pay the salaries of the teachers and care givers. 

Stay tuned for further updates on the Day Care Centre and the other elements of the project which are yet to get started!  We are just waiting for some new photos - as soon as we receive them, we'll put them up!

Oct 25, 2012

Training to former child labourers

Ram
Ram

Over the past year, this project has made a massive difference to child labourers and children who at risk of entering exploitative work in Myagdi district, West Nepal.  One such child is Ram.

Ram, 16 years old, has lived in the small village of Dhairing in Parbat District all his life.  Because of extreme poverty and lack of fertile land, his parents were forced to work on other people’s land offering wages enough for just a hand to mouth existence.  Due to this extreme situation, Ram dropped out of school at the age of 11 and began working as a seasonal agricultural labourer and stonebreaker.

One of REEC’s community workers came across Ram and began the long process of rehabilitation, with the aim of giving him an opportunity of a better life.  Ram became involved in a Child Rights Club but was unwilling to be enrolled into school.  He expressed interest in taking up tailoring training.  REEC supported him on a six month tailoring course along with an apprenticeship placement.  He successfully completed the training and has now been provided with a sewing machine and all the necessary equipment to set up his own tailoring shop.  This will meet not only his needs but also the needs of his family.  He is determined that his sister continues her education and does not have to take the tough path that he was compelled to take.  He is also involved in savings activities within his Child Rights Club in Dhairing and is also saving with a local cooperative.  When he was supported with the sewing machine, he commented:

"The programme conducted by REEC is supporting many child labourers like me so I would like to express my great thanks to REEC and its supporters.  This programme is creating awareness on our rights and is changing our life becoming dignified citizens.”

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