Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic

by ViaNinos UK
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Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
Help working children during the Covid 19 pandemic
New school bags!
New school bags!

We were delighted to partner again with the organisation School in a Bag to provide school bags and equipment to 150 children at CENIT. The school bags were filled with essential items such as pens, pencils, notebooks and maths sets etc. This time we included a small hygiene kit as well complete with facemask, soap, towel, toothbrush and toothpaste. After a long and difficult period where the pandemic severely interrupted learning, it is great to know the children are back in school and have all the items they need.

Due to the pandemic, it has been a while since anyone from ViaNinos visited CENIT, but we are pleased to report that Vero and Albrecht (ViaNinos Germany) will be heading over to visit soon. So we will be able to provide more of an update next time.

We were concerned to hear earlier this year that CENIT had lost funding to provide lunches for the children and decided to step in and help for the rest of this academic year. This means the children will continue to get a hot, healthy lunch each day, which improves, nutrition, attendance, concentration and academic performance. It also gave CENIT some time to secure alternative funding for lunches for the next school year.

There have been various events at CENIT over recent months. For example, on 12th June CENIT hosted an event for International Day for the Eradication of Child Labour, in order to generate awareness and show that children should be our priority, and we must work hard to secure the right to play and study. The slogan for the day was, “Let’s work together, to eradicate child labor!”

Earlier the same month, CENIT celebrated their 31st anniversary and organised an event together with other civil society organisations as well as representatives from central and local government and offered children the opportunity to participate and stand up for their rights.

Children enjoyed a photography workshop run by volunteers as part of the academic support programme whereby children participate in a variety of activities every Friday.

Another popular day on the CENIT calendar is Children’s Day, which is enjoyed by all. As they say at CENIT, ‘if we could view the world through the eyes of the child, the world would be a happy place!’

Thank you for supporting this project which brings so much joy to so many children in Quito, Ecuador.

Children participating in the 31 years event
Children participating in the 31 years event
Photography workshop
Photography workshop
Happy Children's Day!
Happy Children's Day!
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Children in the lunch hall (pre-pandemic)
Children in the lunch hall (pre-pandemic)

It has been a difficult start to 2022, with the pandemic reaching a new peak in January. At CENIT, they opened face-to-face classes on 3rd January but shortly after the authorities announced a return to online schooling. This is a devastating move for the children supported by CENIT who will struggle to learn from home. When the children returned to class last September, they had already missed nearly 18 months of regular classes. But with soaring numbers of staff and pupils catching Covid, they had no choice but to close schools again. Thankfully, the COVID vaccine campaign has progressed over the last year reaching most people in Ecuador, including the poorest. Plans are in place for all schools to return to the classroom in February but, as everywhere else around the world, Omicron is spreading fast.

The pandemic has been damaging to Ecuador’s children and young people. After 10-15 years of progress with schooling rates up at 95-96% by 2019, one of the longer lasting damaging consequences of COVID will be the spike in the level of school desertion and children missing out on their education. It will be very difficult for them to ever catch up again once in-class schooling resumes, a problem that will affect the poorest in particular for years to come. In addition to the loss of education, the children are missing out on the healthy lunch they would normally enjoy at CENIT and the important social interaction. Many children have suffered from the isolation, and some have experienced increased anxiety, as well as violence and abuse. CENIT have reported higher numbers of children working and begging as well as an increase in early pregnancy and/or early marriage.

Despite these challenges, the team at CENIT have been working hard to support vulnerable children and their families, to prevent school desertion and keep children safe. 

We are pleased to be collaborating with the organisation School in a Bag again this year. CENIT are currently ordering new school bags with all the items the children will need for their return to school (pens, pencils, notebooks, maths sets etc). Each bag will also include a hygiene kit with a facemask, soap and sanitiser. We hope the bags will be a nice surprise and a welcome gift for the children as they come back to class. We will update on this project next time.

Thank you for your support for this incredible project!

Lunch time at CENIT (pre-pandemic)
Lunch time at CENIT (pre-pandemic)
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As the world adjusts to the challenges of Coronavirus, we’re slowly getting back to a little normality. Life goes on here as it does around the world. Our partner organisations in Ecuador have seen families return to the markets and the support workers can once again get out to play, socialise and teach the children life skills. But the situation remains challenging as many children have faced increased levels of poverty and abuse during the pandemic. They need help more than ever. You can find out more about the experiences of these children and their families at the bottom of this email.

At ViaNiños, we continue to do what we can to raise funds to support our partner organisations. Uncertainty and crowd restrictions have continued to halt our parties and pub quizzes and we’re focused on outdoor or online activities. This year we’re holding our online prize draw once again. We have three fabulous weekends away to be won! So if you’d like to spend a few days in Tuscany, The New Forest or on the Croatian coast, take a look below for details or donate to the fundraiser here.

Best of all we are participating in GlobalGiving's Little By Little match funding campaign with a 50% match on donations up to 50 USD (approx £36 GBP). So if you donate between the 13th - 17th September we will get 50% extra so £20 becomes 30!!

Thank you in advance for your support. Your donations will make a child smile and you could be the lucky winner of a wonderful weekend!

The ViaNiños team

Your chance to win a fabulous away-break!

We have three wonderful prizes up for grabs..

1. A weekend for two at a beautiful Tuscan hotel

2. A weekend at a stunning cottage in the New Forest – sleeps up to 10

3. A week or long weekend in a fabulous apartment on the western Croatian coast

For a suggested donation of £20, you can enter to win one of these three prizes. You can also enter for more than one! Simply include multiples of donations if you want to up your chances.

Click the link below to donate and write your name and which prize/s you want to bid for in the message box.

CLICK AND DONATE FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN!

The Draw..

The prize winners will be drawn on September 25th 2021 and we’ll share the draw results on our ViaNiños Facebook page on the day.

We’re conscious that these do require you to travel but the vouchers for Italy and Croatia are valid indefinitely.

The Prizes..

 1. A two night break for two at a romantic getaway in Tuscany

Set on the border between Umbria and Tuscany, the Villa di Piazzano is an elegant historic estate dating back to 1464. The Villa was built as the hunting manor of Cardinal Silvio Passerini. It is located in close proximity to Cortona, in a protected nature reserve and looks out over some incredibly beautiful countryside.

An hour and half from Florence, the winners will be able to book one of the beautiful rooms at the hotel for two nights.

Flights are not included.

For more info: www.villadipiazzano.com

** Low season only – April, May, September, October

 2. A mid-week break or long weekend in the New Forest – sleeps 10

Penny Post Cottage, originally built in the 1800's used to be the local Tiptoe post office. It has been sympathetically extended and re-purposed over the years into a lovely weekend getaway.

There is a great pub a short walk up the road and it is situated on the edge of the New Forest National Park. It's just a short drive to the coast and the popular market towns of Lymington and Brockenhurst.

It’s perfect for family or group gatherings.

For more info: www.homeaway.co.uk/p8134794

* Must be used within a year

** Low season only – Oct – mid-April

3. A week or long weekend in the charming historical fishing town of Novigrad in Northern Croatia – sleeps a family of 4

Visit Novigrad, an architectural gem, protected by medieval city walls, filled with beautiful historical churches and sights, rich cultural heritage and preserved natural beauty.

You can enjoy its crystalline waters and beaches, or set out along its cycling paths to discover the close by small medieval towns, passing through some of the most beautiful scenery of the Istrian peninsula.

Food lovers will relish the daily fresh seafood selection in the elegant marina restaurants and discover the excellent local wines and olive oil.

1 hour by car from the airports of Trieste and Pula, the winners will be staying at this exquisite little apartment, perfect for a family of four (2 adults and 2 children).

For more info on Novigrad: Novigrad Istria

** Low season only – April, May, Sept, Oct

The pandemic has had an untold impact on the children we support

The families and children our partner organisations support have struggled immeasurably due to the loss of income from not being able to work in the markets and the children especially missed the much needed opportunities to socialise, learn and play that our partners provide in the market playgroups. Only recently have families been able to return to the markets of Southern Quito and resume work. Over the last 18 months our partners continued to do what they could to keep in touch with the children and support from afar but it hasn’t been easy. They have also been preparing for a potential increase in families who may need support following the pandemic.

Despite the difficulties of working during the pandemic, our colleagues at CENIT adapted to new ways of working to reach the most vulnerable children and most marginalised families. As many children and young people have been unable to access online learning, CENIT have provided alternative home learning materials and also offered a safe space for small groups to come and study. Teachers, outreach workers and social workers have been in constant contact with families and provided help with basic necessities such as food as well as emotional support and practical advice. Sadly, staff are receiving many more reports of domestic abuse, so dealing with this has become an important focus of their work too.

As markets were closed until recently, many more children have been working in dangerous environments or spending time begging on the streets. In the struggle to eliminate child labour, things are moving in the wrong direction, which is why CENIT's work is more important than ever. They are working every day to make sure children prioritise their school work and get extra help when they need it.

Thank you for your support.

Prize 1 - stay at Villa di Piazzano in Tuscany
Prize 1 - stay at Villa di Piazzano in Tuscany
Prize 2 - stay at Penny Post Cottage, New Forest
Prize 2 - stay at Penny Post Cottage, New Forest
Prize 3 - stay in apartment in Novigrad, Croatia
Prize 3 - stay in apartment in Novigrad, Croatia

Links:

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CENIT recently celebrated their 30th anniversary – that is, 30 years of working for the eradication of child labour and helping working children in the poorest sectors of Quito. CENIT’s Director, Ruth, extended her thanks to everyone who has played a part in this journey and that includes you as supporters of this project. 

Over the last 30 years, CENIT have worked day in, day out to support working children, young people and their families to overcome difficulties, access education, realise their rights and live a life of dignity, becoming agents of change within their own families and communities.

How it all started… Sister Arellano wanted to help the many working girls in the Chiriyacu – Camal market and the surrounding areas in Southern Quito. In 1986, Centro de la Niña Trabajadora – CENIT was started as a project by Sister Arellano and the Congregation of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd with the purpose of providing refuge, care, and education, both social and spiritual, to working children, adolescents, and their families. Their motivation and slogan was, “You can’t sleep peacefully while there is a girl in the street.” From 1983 – 1991, the Sisters made frequent visits and organized meetings for children and their families who worked within the Chiriyacu – Camal market. On April 20, 1991, CENIT opened its doors on the streets of Huacho and Jose Peralta, where the organization is currently located. CENIT has expanded its services over the past 30 years and, most importantly, provided love and care to each and every person who forms part of the CENIT community.

I was lucky to be part of the CENIT team for a while when I spent a year volunteering at CENIT back in 2007-8. It was an unforgettable experience and I am grateful now to be part of ViaNinos and have the opportunity to continue supporting their work all these years later. It has been an extremely difficult year for the CENIT community as Ecuador has been hit hard by the pandemic, so they need our support more than ever. Please help if you can.

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Thank you for supporting working children in Quito during this difficult time. Thanks to your donations we are able to continue supporting the incredible work of our partners at CENIT in Ecuador.

Despite the difficulties of working during the pandemic, our colleagues at CENIT have adapted to new ways of working and are still able to reach the most vulnerable children and the most marginalised families. As many children and young people are unable to access online learning, CENIT have provided alternative home learning materials and also offer a safe space for small groups to come and study. Teachers, outreach workers and social workers are in constant contact with families and are providing help with basic necessities such as food as well as emotional suport and practical advice. Sadly, staff are receiving many more reports of domestic abuse, so dealing with this has become an important focus of their work too.

As markets have been closed and people have lost their main source of income, many more children are out working in dangerous environments or spending time begging on the streets. In the struggle to eliminate child labour, things are moving in the wrong direction, which is why CENIT's work is more important than ever. They are working every day to make sure children prioritise their school work and get extra help when they need it. 

Thank you for supporting this vital work.

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ViaNinos UK

Location: London - United Kingdom
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @ViaNinosUK
Project Leader:
Bridget Higginson
London, United Kingdom
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