pic of event
This is 12th report of rehabilitation of 100 former street children project will brief you on the process and progress of our programs in education, health, reintegration, entertainment and sport, agriculture and so on, including the challenges and successes we have faced in past 3 months. We will give an overview of year journey as we reach the end of 2018. Firstly, we thank all the people who see our challenges and commit to supporting us themselves or by advocating on our behalf!
This period the support received from GlobalGiving after of all the donors contributed helped dealing with the normal course of rehabilitation and socioeconomic reintegration into families and society but it was learning process too as we looked at the in bigger picture of how best EDD can continue make meaningful changes in the life of street kids, in their community and how to help them build their capacities in the years to come. EDD studied deeply all the necessary changes and agreed to continue with the usual rehabilitation processes for the children, preparing them for reintegration and following up afterwards. We agreed to include an additional program of psychosocial support for parents to prepare both child and parent for reintegration which will help make it a successful transition. Within 3 years EDD will open its doors to the local community and make its skills and facilities available for wider learning about how to prevent children leaving home to live on the streets. EDD will also be looking for appropriate and sustainable social business enterprises so that the center can become increasingly financially self-reliant and less dependent on external funding streams.
Children’s government: As usual, this year all the children organized and participated in an election where they voted in a new government of 7 ministers, directors and two technicians in each ministry who will take up their roles in January 2019. The previous government was thanked for their hard work in 2018 and received small acknowledgments for their work. At the same time, we also thanked all the children for their amazing contributions to the daily life of the center.
Education is going well even though EDD is facing big challenges due to the high increase of the number of children in education because of the ongoing recruitment and reintegration of more kids every year. It is great to have more children in school but it became a challenge because the funding resources do not grow accordingly. Despite these challenges we managed to educate 24 young men who graduated from vocation trainings and 6 who finished high school this year. Students who are not yet reintegrated passed with 62% in Primary while reintegrated lads succeeded with 61% in Primary. Reintegrated students who are in high school achieved an average of 57% while the average was 80% for the ones who did vocational trainings. We continue to be so grateful to all the supporters who have contributed to this heavy financial responsibility. We assure you that we continue to do our best together and support all the children in education as one of the pillars of the development we want to promote in the EDD boys.
EDD increased its provision of other life skills like computer class, traditional dance, acrobatics, guitar, football, volleyball, art classes, sewing class, composting and agriculture. This will equip the boys with skills which open up a greater range of choices after leaving EDD. We would be delighted to partner with anyone who wants to help us improve these areas of learning while we, of course, continue to appreciate our current donors and collaborators in this field.
EDD is very concerned to assure the good health of the children as a fundamental of successful rehabilitation so all the children who arrive at the center will be assessed in order to know their health status. 2018 was a year where we saw several critical health emergencies:one kid had a heart attack, 2 kids suffered with mental health problems, one boy suffered with poorly managed epilepsy, one had a scrotal hernia, and another had stomach problems while another one is physically handicapped. In addition to these diseases, we had other normal illnesses like 44cases of malaria (just 3 cases in the last quarter which was much less in comparison with previous years after the concerted effort in malaria prevention at the beginning of 2018), ‘flu, parasites, skin problems and other issues. Because it was very expensive to get treatment for these health problems, it cost us 5 times more than the allocated budget. EDD helps children to understand disease prevention on a daily basis through good housekeeping and personal hygiene activities, and of course we bought and used all the necessary products for disease prevention. Regarding the cases of serious illness, we are delighted to inform you that all these boys are now doing very well after our significant investment of time, doctors, staff involvement, expertise, and financial outlay.
Psychological support: EDD’s focus within this quarter was on treating the children who joined the centre with different psychological issues. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who supported us in this field as it is a sensitive area. Apart from our permanent psychologist, we appreciated the assistance of volunteers and others who contributed to this work. We acknowledge the partnership with the Global Recovery Institute team who helped EDD to extend to the program to the parents as the best way to really help a child is for EDD to also work closely with the parents both before and after receiving their children back in their families. Next year EDD expects to prepare rehabilitation for each child and his parents as they are the main people who can help a children to have a better life in the family after reintegration
Basic needs of daily living: As usual EDD helped kids to get new sets of clothes and shoes 3 times a year, 100 new mattresses were gifted to the centre which helped kids to sleep better, three meals a day were cooked and other domestic requirements were provided. Many people contributed to these things in different ways and we give our thanks for all the people who supported in this particular area.
Family visits and reintegration and follow up: Les Enfants de Dieu recruited 76 kids, did 124 family visits in different areas of the country and reintegrated 73 youngsters back into their families between January to December 2018. This all went well with the hard work and the contribution of all the kids, staff and parents involved. We have been held back in this work several times in the year as the EDD car was in the garage for nearly two months in total. We continue to hope for a solution to this ongoing obstacle and meanwhile we do our best to continue the work as effectively as we can.
After reintegration, EDD helps the reintegrated kids to continue their studies till they finish their high school and/or vocational training studies, and after that we use the EDD network to try to connect them to job opportunities and internships which can lead them to job opportunities afterwards. 24 kids who finished vocational trainings got internships and expect to get jobs in due course. EDD organized a training workshop for Alumni who have finished their studies to help them with job seeking and guidance on how to start their own business. This year we hosted three trainings: the first one was of interest to the Alumni network in relation to creating a cooperative business which could benefit several former EDD kids. This was provided by the Market Project who have promised to collaborate with EDD in any business plan which could employ our beneficiaries. Secondly EDD hosted a training provided by Business Development Funds (BDF), which informed our Alumni about the different ways in which young people can be eligible for a loan from BDF to help them start up a business. The last workshop was a painting and decorating training provided by Angels Paintersfrom the UK which equipped 12 of our Alumni with marketable skills. All those trainings came to help the Alumni to build more capacity and skills for business and making a living.
We are glad that Alumni Core Group developed the initiative called JUMPSTART through which the Alumni are able to help each other to support themselves. The Core Group has 20 places and each member of the Core Group commits to serving the needs and interests of all Alumni, who are almost 550 in number at this stage. We are looking forward to seeing the progress EDD, Jumpstart and all our Partners will be making in the coming year!
Christmas and family reunion event
The 20th December 2018 was a great day where we hosted a big event of around 500 people including the Alumni, the parents of children, the EDD kids, friends, volunteers and staff with a purpose of celebrating the year achievements, celebrating Christmas and rejoicing together as a big family. We took that opportunity to meet all the Alumni who were supported by EDD, to see where they all are and advise on the best ways to continue together as family in future. During that event, EDD gave awards to three Alumni who succeeded in different areas: one was the Best Entrepreneur of the Year who started his business and gave job opportunities to other EDD guys, another is a successfully reintegrated young man who found effective solutions for his difficulties despite living in hardship and the third who has accepted the difficulties he faced in the past and who has built a successful life for himself and his family while continuing to help and advocate for EDD and his Alumni ‘brothers’ and the EDD kids. There was one award in each category and we will do the same again next year.
Summary of three guys’ stories and why they were selected for awards in 2018:
Sibomana Emanuel: is boy who joined the center in 2008, was reintegrated in 2015 and joined vocational training for hair dressing in the same year. In 2016 he got an internship in a hair salon and did well so that the owner of the salon employed him as person who showed potential and good discipline at work. Within only one year he managed to save money to open his own salon which he opened in 2017. Since then he has been able to employ his mates as well as offer internship opportunities to EDD Alumni. EDD awarded Emmanuel for helping his mates and using the skills he was given to start a business. He was a selected out of many others but he is a good example of what EDD guys can achieve.
Willy Mutabazi: He joined the center in 2006 and was reintegrated in his family in 2012 while he was still in school. He was a creative guy who did different things to develop himself. EDD awarded him as an Alumni who is so proud of his past story and freely shares his testimony with others, and so helps to build a strong awareness for the center and his mates. EDD awarded him for being a good ambassador for center and for all his peers whenever he goes. Not all former street kids are as open about the hard lives they have had, feeling ashamed of the past rather than proud of what they have achieved.
Rukundo Jean Claude: Rukundo joined the center in 2007 from the street; he stayed at the center for a long time because he only had his mum and she was living in a very precarious situation. In 2016 he decided that he wanted to be reintegrated back to his mum. The staff who took him back to his family were challenged by the situation they were in and called EDD thinking to bring Rukundo back to the center again. However, when they told him their decision, Rukundo refused and told them that he would find the solution for the family situation. He advocated for his family and with the support of a community work program he was able to build their house. But they only did half the agreed work and the house was too small for his mother and her other 3 children plus Rukundo. He started to build the next day and managed to finish his mum’s house and also extended it so now it can house all the family. EDD awarded him for being a solution for his family’s problems and accepting to live in such a situation even though he was given an easier alternative.
Our sustainability projects:
Les Enfants de Dieu is aiming to develop sustainable financial solutions for fundraising. Over the past years the center has relied on donations and has experienced different challenges related to funding cuts and different international crises. Also it can be hard because some funding comes with restrictions where the funders’ conditions do not align with EDD priorities and objectives. That’s why EDD is learning many processes which can help the center to open up a social enterprise business strands which will help EDD to self sustain up to 50% within 3 years. EDD has so far been able to raise 7% of the budget from art and agricultural products, proving that it is possible. Whatsmore these explorations provide excellent opportunities for learning skills and overcoming challenges experienced. If anyone has any good ideas for such income generating schemes, please do share them with us in this ongoing process. You can see some of the art produced and pictures of the farm.
EDD project is listed on GlobalGiving, where we ran an end of year campaign from 27th November to 31st December 2018. We take this opportunity to thank all the people who contributed in that campaign which enabled us to raise all needed money for Christmas event, for converting the firewood kitchen over to gas and nearly US$1000 towards the 2019 education budget. Thank you once again and we will do even more in 2019 to impact the lives of kids who have decided to leave street life.
To any and all of you who want to assist in 2019, we really need your support for education and for providing meals for the kids as these are the highest expenditures accounting for nearly 60% of the total budget. Other areas which also require funding include sport, health care, family empowerment, family visits, administration expenses and in 2019 the budget for these is nearly US$16500.
We want to conclude this report by expressing our huge gratitude to all of our donors, friends and partners in this important ongoing work of rehabilitating and reintegrating kids and youngsters back into their families, both socially and economically. We will continue updating you every three months as one way to stay in touch wherever you are on the world. Thank you again for GlobalGiving to be a main connection to stay in touch.
You are always very welcome to live a feedback down so that we can see your advise and help in our future plans!