At our June 11 members meeting in Hong Kong, Zein Williams from Child Welfare Scheme Nepal (CWS), spoke about her recent visit to Shakti in Pokhara. CWS project manages Shakti on the ground and assists with fundraising, staffing and ongoing management. You can read an exerpt of Zein’s feedback below or download the Mid year report May 2012- FINAL for more information. Please contact New Day project leader Danny den Hartog on firstname.lastname@example.org about joining the New Day visit to Shakti on September 30 – October 1, 2012.
The Hong Kong team visited the project in March 2012 and found that the atmosphere in the house was relaxed and peaceful. For security reasons, the house has no name and no logo and a female guard is posted at the door at all times. Inside the house, all 11 resident girls greeted us with smiles. We toured the house and found the rooms clean, simple and decorated with drawings done by the girls. The rooftop area and garden provides a secure outdoor gathering place to socialize and play at the end of the day. Anisha, the project director, drops in and out the house every day. She is warm and affectionate, the girls seem to have a great bond with her.
When we arrived early evening, Anisha, Suman (the male project officer) and the resident housemother were present in the house. Some of the girls and the housemother were preparing dinner while others were watching television. We all sat together, drank tea and everyone introduced themselves in English.
The girls seemed to be very happy to use their language skills. Some of the more extraverted girls asked us if and when we will be coming back. There were a few girls who were shy and did not speak up and we were told that one of the girls had not spoken since arriving in the house a few months ago therefore they do not know her background.
We thoroughly enjoyed this relaxed, engaging exchange. It was a happy visit, and we felt sincerely welcomed by everyone in the house. We can’t wait to go back. Perhaps next time we will bring along some pictures of our lives and some books or games to interact a bit longer with the girls!
During the past six months:
- 40 girls have been supported and 11 new girls joined the shelter
- 6 girls were reintegrated with their families and 3 girls left the shelter (one with her baby) to live in anindependent living facility
- 8 girls were rehabilitated for long term support
- 11 girls received formal education training
- 5 girls benefited from different vocational training skills, e.g. caregiver, housekeeping
- All the girls living in the shelter benefited from regular medical check-ups and basic counselling
- 6 girls were provided legal support to obtain their birth certificate or their citizenship and identity card