Residential care program

This project intends to provide safe place for Orphans and Street Children who have no where to get protection services in Kilimanjaro region. These children are ones who have run away from their homes and end up on the street and children in the communities who have no one to provide protection services.

We believe that all children have rights! They have right to clean water, food, healthcare, a roof over their head and clothing to wear. We believe that by committing ourselves to help orphans and street children we have a chance of giving them a feeling of belonging to the world.

PROJECT BACKGROUND

The social problem of Orphans and Street Children is an issue of concern to civil society and government, local and international. Since the early 1990s Tanzania has witnessed a visible increase in the number of children living and working on the streets. In the Kilimanjaro region it is believed that there are more than 5000 children who are orphans and street children. A census conducted by Mkombozi in 2003 identified 288 street children in Moshi town only and in 2006 the second census identified 470 street children in the same town. These data inform us that day after day the number of children migrating from their homes to streets is increasing.

The causation of street children has been attributed to a number of macro societal and economic factors, including a rapid population increase, an unresponsive employment market, an under resourced educational system, increased pressures on peasants and increasingly uneconomic smallholdings in the rural sector (Household Budget Survey 2000/1).

Mkombozi’s research on child vulnerability in Kilimanjaro Region has shown how income poverty increases familial pressures, which can in turn result in frustration, domestic violence and alcoholism. This then exacerbates income and non-income poverty within the family. It is this cycle of poverty in its widest sense that serves to exclude families and children from traditional social support networks and ultimately pushes children and youth to migrate from their homes to urban centres.

The recent factor that is also contributing to child vulnerability and migration to street is HIV/AIDS. A number of people who are both getting infected and dying from HIV/AIDS in Africa is increasing day after day. Tanzania is one of the African countries that are highly affected by this problem and Kilimanjaro region is one of the leading regions in Tanzania that are highly affected by this epidemic disease. In this region there are a lot of children whose parents have passed away due to HIV/AIDS and there are few individuals and organizations that are paying attention to this problem.

The people who are dying of AIDS in Kilimanjaro are youth and adults; many are married and have children. When they die their children are left with no one to take care of them and if there happens to be a person who takes care of them, it is an old person (grandparent). At the end of the day the grandparents do not manage to provide these children with their needs and as a result they run away to look for their needs on the streets.

Once in town these children often end up homeless with no adult caregivers. Alternatively many girl children migrate to the towns as domestic workers, and although not visible on the streets, increasingly run the risk of exploitation within hidden domestic workplaces. Many girls and boys are pressurized by circumstances and people into prostitution, facing both physical and mental violence and running a high risk of HIV/AIDS infection.

Boys and girls who live and work on the streets are vulnerable to wide and extreme violations of their rights. They have difficulties accessing basic services and are verbally, physically, and sexually abused. Few trust adults. Many perpetuate abuse on their weaker peers. Although these boys and girls may have a range of skills related to survival and informal income generation, these strengths remain unarticulated and unrecognized by mainstream society. This combined with the fact that few of them have benefited from sustained formal education means that these children generally find it very difficult to earn money legally. Faced with this situation, many are forced into crime and confrontation with the general public. Significant numbers of these boys and girls seek temporary relief from their situation through substance abuse. They become trapped in a cycle of poverty, violence and abuse. They are socially excluded; highly visible, mobile and increasing in number. They are unable to access basic services – including schooling – generating further social problems and demands on already overstretched services and the criminal justice system, and as these children age they run increasing risks of HIV/AIDS and conflict with the law.

Recent studies of poverty, including the World Bank’s ‘Voices of the Poor’, have emphasized that poverty is not just a lack of income. It is the experience of multiple forms of vulnerability, including (but not limited to) exposure to violence and unlawful activities, poverty of expectations and inability to access services. Although these factors have only recently come onto the development agenda as key facets of the poverty alleviation debate they are fundamental to any discussion about prioritizing children and young people in national planning. (McAlpine, Child Participation: Platitude or Reality: Paper presented at ESRF Forum, 2003).

There are few organisations in Kilimanjaro region that are focussing specifically on provision of protection services to orphans and street children. Even the few that exist are based in urban. This in one way denies the right to majority of orphans and street children who are in rural areas and need of their services. It is the time for organisations dealing with orphans and street children to start extending their services to rural areas where there are majority of invisible poor children who need their services most.

PROBLEM STATEMENT

All children have rights. They have a right to clean water, food, healthcare, a roof over their head and clothing to wear. All children have the right to be protected from any forms of discrimination and violence.

Orphans and street children who live and work on the streets are vulnerable to wide and extreme violations of their rights. They have difficulties accessing basic services and are verbally, physically, and sexually abused. The street environment forces these children to enter into doing illegal activities for their survival which in one way or another causes them to be in conflict with country laws and general public. Significant numbers of these children seek temporary relief from their situation through substance abuse and as these children age they run increasing risks of HIV/AIDS.

The problems of nutrition in Tanzanian Communities are very much related to undernourishment or poor food intake. The major nutritional problems are affecting the population of Tanzania society include protein energy, under nutrition, anemia and other micronutrient deficiencies. A relatively high proportion of disadvantaged children especially orphans and street children suffer from various forms of malnutrition as they have difficult to access good food with balanced diet. These children when brought from the streets recorded to have high rates of under nutrition because of poor food intake while on the streets.

There are few agencies that are paying attention to the problem of orphans and street children who live and work on the streets in Kilimnajaro region. The number of children on the streets is still increasing and this by itself calls for other actors who have an interest in this field to also start engaging in supporting these children. As Kili Centre is upholding and committed to UN CRC it has decided to provide protection services to these through Transitional Residential Care Centre. Through residential care centre orphans and street children will be disengaged from all forms of violence and will have an opportunity of accessing their basic needs. Kili Centre believes that, ‘by committing ourselves to help orphans and street children we have a chance of giving them a feeling of belonging to the world’.

PROJECT OBJECTIVES

  • To provide safe place for orphans and street through residential care centre.
  • To initiate and run income generating projects for Residential Care Centre.

TARGETED AUDIENCE OF THIS PROJECT

Orphans and street children who live and work on the streets in Kilimanjaro region will benefit from this project.

THE MAIN ACTIVITIES OF THE PROJECT

  • Providing shelter, food and cloth to children
  • Providing health care to children
  • Providing guidance to children
  • Providing adult care and attention to children during the day and night
  • Attending social and psychological needs of children
  • Building capacity of our staff
  • Protecting children from any forms of violence
  • Networking and collaborating with other programs inside and outside the organization
  • Initiating income generating project (centre’s vegetables garden, chicken’s project , rabbits’ project and maize and beans farm project)
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the project
  • Buying land for building our own premise
  • Building new kitchen or renovating the existing one
  • Building toilets and bathrooms
  • Putting fence around the center’s premise
  • Water connection
  • Power installation

3 Comments

  1. Patrick says:

    Thank you, may Allah bless the work of your hands.

  2. isaac sanga says:

    We appretiate for supoorting the orphanes and homeless children. Am a form 3 student at Duluti secondary school our group are working on our research about the street children in moshi and we are requestion the statistics of the increasing of the number of street children in moshi town. Thanks

  3. Laura says:

    Hi,
    I was brifly involved with Mkombozi in 1996 – 97 at t’he styart. I have been offered playground equipment from our local council in UK, and was wondering if you could use it, should we arrange shipment. Or would it be better to sell on ebay to raise funds for Mkomobzi instead?
    Thanks,
    Laura Collins

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