Safe Alternative Care and Skills for Life

Global Development Group believes in the importance of preserving the family unit and a child’s right to be raised within their family wherever possible. Unfortunately, there are times when children are unable to remain in the care of their parents. In these situations, which are often temporary, our projects work to determine the best type of alternative care to ensure the protection and rights of the child are upheld. Child-focused programs include rehabilitation which is especially important for those who have been living on the streets, and we prepare children for reintegration to family or into independent living for older youth.

In the Philippines, project J519 Center for Change and in southern India, J751N ICMC Development Project both provide alternative care with education, life skills, vocational and employment pathways for vulnerable children and youth. In addition to attending classes, students participate in learning culturally relevant life skills including household chores, planting and harvesting coconut trees, growing vegetables and fruit trees together with raising pigs and chickens. These activities contribute to sustainability in the projects and the children enjoy learning both inside and outside the classroom.

J751N ICMC Development Project expects to celebrate the graduations of 8 female students in final year of their Bachelor degree and 3 male students in their final semester of college this year. GDG’s Jordan Brayley, Kelley Chisholm and David Robertson monitored the project and found the farming activity to be progressing strongly towards sustainability in rice, a key area of food expense for the project.

J519 Center for Change is working to improve follow up of children that have reintegrated to their families or homes. Previously contact was maintained with the children via messenger and text. A government social worker assists, but this is inconsistent so the team has committed to improve their practises and ensure the social worker visits to check on reintegrated children consistently.