OUR ACTION IN BANGLADESH.
With street children (since 2001)
In Bangladesh, several hundred thousand children live on the streets. Orphaned, abandoned or abused, they have had to flee their families. These so-called street children are left to their own devices. Most of them are unsocialised, ignored by the administration, despised by the population and exploited by the mob. If they remain on the street, their life expectancy will not exceed 25 years.
Others have a family but live in the many slums. Too poor, their parents cannot provide for them or send them to school. They are forced to work or beg: these are the children on the street.
Maer Achol shelter and Shukhy Ghar
IActive in the Bangladeshi countryside since 1998, Street Children’s Partners, a local branch of PARTENAIRES, opened a shelter for street children in Mirpur, a popular suburb of Dhaka, in 2002. The first children to be taken in named it Maer Achol, which means in Bengali the fold of the sari (where the mother shelters her baby)
Today, 330 children and adolescents, aged between 6 and 19, are taken in, cared for, educated and trained in a trade. Of this total, 80 are genuine ‘street children’ and are fully supported by PARTENAIRES in its two Homes. The other 250, living in the neighbouring shantytowns with their families who are too poor to send them to school, benefit from our school and our services (health, training).
Street children in Dhaka
We offer children:
Protection: A roof over their heads and a security guard.
Food, care and hygiene: Three balanced meals a day, on-site infirmary and psychological follow-up, medical follow-up in partner hospitals, clothes and showers.
Education and vocational training
- Non-formal schooling at first in the Foyer, then in public school, college and high school for some, and university for the most talented of our residents.
- Diversified professional training for the others with two specialised establishments, UCEP and SOS Children’s Villages.
- Sewing and handicraft workshop – computer workshop – English classes.
- Sports and leisure activities.
Social and economic integration through qualified employment
Stable employment at the end of their studies or apprenticeship with individual follow-up for at least two years.
And in the hostel, we sing… and dance…
OUR SPONSORSHIP SYSTEM
Our sponsorships are collective in order to be fair to all the children and to give everyone the same chances to build their future. This system allows us to include your sponsorship in a project that is fair to all. Thanks to the biannual letters, our sponsors are regularly informed of life at the Foyer. They share the history, joys and worries of the children, and are kept info
Thanks to the biannual letters, our sponsors are regularly informed of life at the Foyer. They share the history, joys and worries of the children, and are kept informed of the activities that punctuate their lives.
The shelter staff member
There are 24 qualified staff members: director, counsellor, accountant, teachers(regularly taking part in training courses), psychologist, educators, night supervisors, cooks, cleaners and guard.