Understanding Children from their own perspective

AfCiC social workers have embarked on different activities and strategies to try to create rapport with children living on the street and to build trust between the children and AfCiC. The program has been encouraging street children to attend our Outreach Programme for Vulnerable Children centre (OPVC) daily from morning untill late afternoon, to keep them away from the streets whilst involving them in activities like life skills and football.

Every morning during weekdays the social workers conduct a street walk around Thika town, between 8a.m. to 9a.m aimed at; identifying street children for outreach program, creating awareness about the OPVC, identifying new street children keeping street records, creating awareness on any scheduled activities and prevention and rescue of new street children.

Street work has enabled social workers to interact freely with the street children at their hangout joints where they beg, eat, sleep and spend their day and they are informed about the OPVC and the support on offer to them. This has eventually led many to attend the OPVC every day. When they are there they spend the day with the social workers learning, washing their clothes, bathing and enjoying sports. They are also fed a nutritious meal and helped to detoxify any who are using drugs. The staff focus on creating unity amongst the boys, identifying their needs and nurturing their individual talents.

Through this outreach work it has been possible to identify young people who are willing to join into-work program and several street children have been assisted to acquire national identity cards.

When the street children check in at OPVC in the morning, the social workers monitor them to bath, wash their clothes and hang them nicely to dry, clean all the rooms and verandahs at OPVC and they are encouraged to put on clean clothes.

The children are involved in a variety of games such as darts, football, and rounder’s for detoxification purposes. This happens daily at Starehe grounds where boys are trained in football skills as one way of identifying talents and abilities.

In the afternoons, the older street boys train in football and life skills. This has been an achievement since the boys attend in big numbers; this is also an avenue to teach them about HIV/AIDS. You can read more about AfCiC are using football to help change lives on our website.

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