Mar 30, 2021

Report March 2021

We hope this message finds you well and that you are handling these uncertain times as  good as possible.

From Hogar de Cristo we wanted to let you know our current situation of our organization in Chile and how we have been carrying out our project focused on young mothers.

As you may already know, in Chile, more than 200,000 children and young people are outside the educational system. With the current health crisis this number will surely increase. Women drop out less, but when they do, they don't return. School exclusion is much more damaging and limiting future opportunities for girls and young women since they tend to stay at home, sacrificing their right to education, taking care of housework, younger siblings or an older or disabled relative , so that adults can go out and generate income. For the most part, it is the issue of caring for others that is behind female dropping out of school, which includes that of their own babies, in the case of teenage pregnancies. And although these have been decreasing in recent years, according to 2018 figures, 50% of pregnant schoolchildren do not continue studying.

Gender inequality is then expressed in this fundamental right -education-, which is also key for the promotion of people and so that poverty does not continue to reproduce inter-generationally, from grandmothers to mothers and from mothers to daughters. In Chile, three-quarters of those who neither study nor work are women. Apart from that, only 48% of women participate in the labor market and, on average, receive 25% lower remuneration compared to men. Although there are several factors that influence this gender inequality, one of the most influencing is the educational system.

Due to the pandemic, education became much more complex than usual. In Chile, Face-to-face education has not returned. Furthermore, the country is facing a new wave with new communities in quarantines.

Our students have needed more emotional support than ever. They have shown how much they miss the protective space of the school and we have responded with constant monitoring online, giving distance classes through our Virtual Learning Classrooms and creating new workshops to motivate them and continue teaching. We never lost contact with them. These new learning experiences are now a successful reality. Young mothers are super grateful, they perceive us as a recess from everything bad. For them it is a moment of relaxation, a space for personal and group care. We work with a wide variety of topics, topics that they themselves raised with their tutors that we later transformed into new workshops.

We have been able to achieve this transformation because of your support. Your contribution has meant being able to continue providing quality education to hundreds of young mothers throughout the country. We work so that many more can complete their educational careers and their personal dreams, without sexist barriers or economic, social, cultural limitations. So that the "intersectionality" of their disadvantages: being a woman, a mother, vulnerable, part of an indigenous minority, living in a rural sector, do not become the sum of all evils. We really thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your help that is giving hope and a future to so many young people.

Mar 29, 2021

Report March 2021

We hope this message finds you well and that you are handling these uncertain times as good as possible.

From Hogar de Cristo we wanted to let you know our current situation of our organization in Chile and how we have been carrying out our project focused on young students.

As you may already know, in Chile, more than 200,000 children and young people are outside the educational system. With the current health crisis this number will surely increase. Education became much more complex than usual. Many young people were already being excluded from the system but the pandemic  has widened the educational, economic, and social gaps.

Face-to-face education in Chile is still not a reality due to the pandemic and in fact the country is in a new wave, with many communities in new quarantines.

Our students have needed more emotional support than ever. They have shown how much they miss the protective space of the school and we have responded with constant monitoring online, giving distance classes through our Virtual Learning Classrooms and creating new workshops to motivate them and continue teaching. We never lost contact with them. We made a diagnosis and found them with many uncertainties, anxiety and demotivation. There were many who said: "I'm locked up, they won't let me out." It happened that they began to miss the classroom, the school, the classmates, the teachers. Before the pandemic, everyone wanted to be out of school, they did not like the norms very much, the rules, but this crisis came to show that education, educational establishments, are a very important linking element in them. When one hears as a cliché that the school is the second family, it became real because that is where young people receive a lot of support; there were links that they began to miss.

In this time of pandemic, we discovered that we could not deliver certainty to young people or their families. We couldn't tell him this was going to end tomorrow, because no one knew anything anyway. And here we adopt a phrase: "The opposite of uncertainty is not certainty, but it is the community, it is living it together." That was a super important discovery because at the youth and team level we concluded by doing group activities that are not only to know how they are or what they need, but so that they could collaborate mutually, get to know each other and accompany each other. Young people have given us a lot and made us understand and learn about resilience. When everything seemed lost, with an uncertainty that at the beginning was very powerful and we figuring out what we could do from our computers, which seemed impossible, we began to see that we could overcome this uncertainty together. It was an invitation to be united, there was no reason to be alone.

Virtual Learning Classrooms and online workshops and are now a successful reality. Young people are super grateful, they perceive us as a recess from everything bad. For them it is a moment of relaxation, a space for personal and group care. We work with a wide variety of topics, topics that they themselves raised with their tutors that we later transformed into new workshops.

We have been able to achieve this transformation because of your support. Your contribution has meant being able to continue providing quality education to thousands of young people throughout the country. We really thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your help that is giving hope and a future to so many young people.

Nov 17, 2020

Project Report November 2020

It has been a year that no one will easily forget. In March when the pandemic began we all thought that the emergency would last a couple of months but we never imagined that it would last the whole year.

However, Hogar de Cristo has adapted quickly, providing solutions to the population we serve. To reverse the bad, good, innovative projects are needed, focused on the most vulnerable and excluded, that excite and awaken the solidarity of all. 

PADAM stands for Program of Home Care for the Elderly and is a revolutionary tool of inclusion and social support for the elderly. Juan Cristóbal Romero, Executive Director of Hogar de Cristo, explains: "PADAM costs 80 thousand pesos a month against the million pesos that it means to have an older adult in a residence." With this assistance at home, deterioration is slowed and the autonomy of the elderly is maintained. And they are enriched services that are not limited only to baskets of products or food, but also very broad supports –from accompanying them to their medical visits to accompanying them in an outdoor activity–, both for them and for their caregivers. 

Eduardo Valenzuela, doctor from the Geriatrics and Gerontology program at the Catholic University School of Medicine, said at the beginning of the pandemic that the best way to protect older adults would be to “copy the model that Hogar de Cristo has used for decades to identify and link older adults with local networks, read PADAM, one of the most successful initiatives that the foundation has had in recent decades. Precisely because of this ability to identify the most fragile people and link them with health care social networks and protect them. Many of them would have died alone in their homes if this program did not exist”. And the same applies to the PAFAM, which are social support programs aimed at families that have one or more members with mental disabilities. Both the PADAM and the PAFAM require significant additional financial support to that provided by the State, therefore, we invite you to collaborate with the elderly and with those with intellectual or mental disabilities.

“Despite the tremendous difficulties we have suffered this year, learning and a job well done have strengthened. Now what we need is the usual: appeal to the conscience of people, as our founder always did and ask them to join," sums up Juan Cristóbal Romero. And paraphrasing one of his well-known reflections, he says: “´We need you… We don't force you, but we need you to carry out our plans. If you don't come, a work will remain undone, that you, only you, can do. Nobody can take this work, because each one of you has his share of good to do in it, 'asked Alberto Hurtado. And now, in the midst of an unparalleled health, social and economic crisis, his call makes more sense than ever. 

 
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