"Teacher, I want to see my mother…" Chace said to his home dad when they rode out on bicycles together.
Chace was born when his parents had been old. He has four siblings above. His mother died of illness while he was in his kindergarten, and his father also passed away when he was six years old. His eldest sister passed away a year ago, and his second sister after getting married left the family without contact. His eldest brother, is 20 years apart from him and bears the responsibility of taking care of Chace. But he currently got divorced and has to take care his own 13-year-old son. Due to the long-term unsteady work, his elder brother was unable to return home until late at night, leaving Chace and his own son at home. Without proper guidance, Chace often skipped classes and wandered on streets with his peers till midnight.
One of the MSM community partner, Mother Li, met Chace while doing community service. Mother Li, who has a child and happens to be Chace's classmate, knowing the situation of Chace's broken family, expressed willingness to open her home as i-ro i-ro Children's Home, a community childcare facility, to take care of Chace. At first, Chace was not quite able to adapt to the new environment. With the adjustment of his living habits, he gradually felt loving care from the new home and began to have a stable schedule of life and school. He took the initiative to help with various affairs, and shared his emotions and the juvenile problems. He dropped the old habit of wandering outside, and actively participated in various skills certification exams to find goals and directions for his life.
The family merrily celebrated Chace's birthday. Although Chace often behaved coolly, he is now willing to call Mother Li as "Mom."
From broken to complete, Chace 's journey home took a long time. Initially, he was like a duckweed without roots, but now i-ro i-ro Children's Home has become his life's belonging!
Little Yoda is now in the first grade of junior high school. His parents divorced when he was 7 years old; his 3 siblings and him were taken care of by his grandparents. Because his grandparents did not have stable incomes besides the elderly pension, the family living condition is quite poor. Since the stimulus of skipped generation education was insufficient, Little Yoda was once identified as being delayed in development, plus severely lacking in self-confidence, easily afraid of the crowd, and was assigned to a resource class at school.
As the staff of i-ro i-ro Children's Home (the Home), a community childcare facility of the Mustard Seed Mission, saw that Little Yoda's family situation was in need of assistance and arranged Little Yoda to come to the Home while he was in the sixth grade of elementary school. In the beginning, Little Yoda had acts of theft, possibly because of the material need insecurity resulted from family poverty. Under the guidance of the teacher, Little Yoda gradually changes. He cultivates good living habits such as folding his own clothes, keeping his living environment tidy, etc., and gradually keeps up with the progress in schoolwork.
In addition to academic progress, another advantage of Little Yoda is that he has a strong body, so the teacher encourages him to pursue to be a weightlifter. Thus, Little Yoda is affirmed in academics and sports, and has smile on his face often because of self-confidence. As the result, his personality becomes more cheerful; now he is everyone's barrel of laugh. With the sense of humor of the aboriginal people plus quick in thinking and reaction, he can always make everyone laugh. The Little Yoda is trying hard to become an athlete currently, hoping that he will have a long-term skill to help his family eliminate poverty in the future.
i-ro i-ro Children's Home helps children make great progress in life and learning. Through life care and counseling, children can have a second home and regain a happy and stable life. At the same time, the emotional connection between children and families are maintained. Due to opportunities to relieve and learn, family conflicts can be reduced, the parent- child communication can be proved and the family relationships will be re-established with more laughter and warmth.
For ordinary families, a happy outing is very common, but for the children and parents from disadvantaged families, it's like an unimaginable dream. Thanks to the love and care from the society, let the children and parents of i-ro i-ro Children's Home, together with their caregivers, have this joy and touch on the annual Family Day.
It is not dawn yet. At the seaside of northern Emerald Bay, the adults and children are sitting on the beach, waiting for the black night to fade away. A dim light breaks through the clouds and the sun rises also illuminating their hearts. Today, there is a significant and important task- responding to the UN SDGs "Life Below Water"- the Beach Cleanup Action starts in the rising sunrise.
Everyone holds an iron clip in one hand and a garbage bag in the other, walking back and forth on the beach. It seems to be looking for treasures, actually they want to find out the rubbish buried in the sand. After picking up for a period of time, even the sun shines above, everyone is still full of "Harvest" and with a smile of accomplishment on the face.
This beach cleaning activity not only achieves the purpose of protecting the environment and removing garbage, but more importantly, it teaches children the importance of caring for the ocean and establishing the concept of protecting the environment. Let the children understand that every time they pick up a piece of garbage, they are contributing for the global marine ecology and the overall health of human beings.
After completing the beach cleaning, every adult and child, looking at the results, fully understand that we should start to change the habits in life and implement the actions of reducing the amount of garbage, so as to have the opportunity to restore the beautiful ocean. The scenery makes the ecological environment we live in no longer deteriorate.
Through extending from the environment to family education, the nature is our best mentor. Making every child learn positively through physical practice, start from caring for the living environment, and cultivating correct concepts from childhood, they will be able to give back to the society and the environment in the future as an adult.
With i-ro i-ro Children's Home community supportive care services, looking after vulnerable children in the community, a safe and stable growth environment is established for high-risk families and children. At the same time, it takes into account the parental growth of the children's families, and gradually restores the family care function.
Thank you so much for being a life-changing support!
Early in the morning, the social worker received a phone call from MSM Community Common Good Partner, telling that 2 children under their long term care will have no one to take care of soon, because their father was going to be in custody. The two children had lived in unstable condition. With their father’s petition, "i-ro i-ro Children's Home", the Mustard Seed Mission community care base, promised to take care of Sunny and her elder brother.
The first time meeting the 7-year-old Sunny, she had warm smiles and bright eyes. She shared with the social worker "We can’t live at home as my dad was locked up because of his wrong deed." Sunny and her brother are children of single-parent family from remote areas. Their father, whose job is unsteady, has addiction to alcohol and tobacco. Due to his neglected parenting, the two children were already long cared by MSM Community Common Good Partner. The family's living environment was messy, and their clothes and quilts had not been replaced with new ones for years. Sunny has a poor lung function as result of long term exposure to second-hand smoke. She also has allergies and head lice; the bad smell of her body undermines her relationship with others; no classmates want to be friends with her, leaving her lack of self-confidence. Sunny has turned into sad "Cloudy".
Now, the first thing that Sunny does every day after returning i-ro i-ro Children’s Home is taking a bath. Moreover, Sunny is taught to tidy up the environment via doing houseworks. During the holidays, she is able to play ball outdoor with other children. The exercises help her to build physical strength and gaining self-confidence through interacting with others and expressing herself.
i-ro i-ro Children's Home is a community childcare institute that the Mustard Seed Mission cooperates with our Community Common Good Partners. Such cooperation enables children of dysfunctional or needy families to get proper care and life education including the basic self-hygiene and self-care, in the original community and environment. Through the interaction in schools, families and communities, the children’s character, academic learning, interpersonal relationship and parent-child relationship would be reconstructed or restored.
Witness of domestic violence
When Neo was living in his original family, his mother did not have a job so she couldn't afford to feed Neo, his younger sister, and herself. In addition to this, his mother's boyfriend constantly beat his mother and Neo. Not only as witnesses of domestic violence, Neo and his sister often got mental and physical abuse. As a result, his mother suffered from mental issues. Rubbish piled up in the house without anyone to take care of it; mosquitos thrived and consequentially all three of them got scabies.
Neo hated when he had to clean up after his sister urinated and defecated. He carried the responsibility of his mother on his shoulder, while his sister always act innocent in front of his mother, letting Neo take all the blame from their mother. In the heart of Neo, his sister is simply a dirty and naughty chaos. What's worse is that their scabies couldn't be cured because cross-infection between the two of them. After staying in the hospital for one month, the two were placed in a family-like placement institute. At first, Neo always kept his distance away from his sister, refused to be involved in anything related to her.
Holding Onto His Sister's Hand
One year passed, under the guidance of social workers and their fostering parents, Neo started to notice that his "dumb sister" became more mature and caring, learned how to shower, brush her teeth and go to bathroom all on her own. His sister had started her new semester in her kindergarten, learning about numbers and zhuyin. Every time Neo got new stationaries, he would be more than willing to share them with his sister. He started to help her prepare things for her school day in her backpack. Whenever they went out together, Neo would protectively hold her shoulder or her hand. Whenever she got sick, Neo would be the first one to worry about how she's doing, asking "Is everything alright?...are you feeling better?"
No one knows where Neo and his sister would eventually end up at; no one knows if their mom could get any better. Nevertheless, Neo knows that he has to hold his sister's hand towards the future, because they are in the family.
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