We started with 2 children being removed from the streets of Nairobi.
THE 4Rs MODEL
Tumaini Kwa Watoto (TKW) and its partners have uniquely positioned themselves to help rescue children from streets. We rescue the children from the streets and address the issues revolving around them allowing children to settle in peaceful habitations, in the comfort of their homes and continuation of the family life and education. We take preventative measures to ensure that the children stay at home where they belong.
Tumaini KwaWatoto has a 4Rs Operations Strategy that focuses on the process of rescue and reintegration of children from the streets, rehabilitation centers and children’s homes.
Perhaps the most important aspect of the work is to establish real and meaningful relationships with the children on the streets. To achieve that our Outreach Department seeks to build rapport with the children with the aim of rescuing them, and reuniting them with their families. Our team goes to the streets where the children congregate. This is where they sleep, where they eat, where they live. Often the living conditions are beyond acceptable and even dangerous. Our team visits those sites on a weekly basis. That’s why our social workers are well-known and accepted because the children know them and trust them. The aim of each visit is to either initiate new relationships or reaffirm existing ones.
Our social workers sit with the children and listen to their stories and accounts of the events that have let them to life on the streets. We ask questions and try to gather enough information that would allow us to further investigate each case and discover how much of the story is true and eventually trace back and find the family or relatives of the child. We then try to connect to the parents or relatives of the child and initiate the process of rescuing the child and returning him or her back home.
Once the outreach team has built rapport with the children living on the streets, following the acceptable procedure, the child is removed from the streets and taken to the Government Rehabilitation Centre or Bethany Half-way centre or directly to their own family.
The process of rescuing a child is not a simple one. We work together with governmental agencies and in accordance with all the laws and regulations to ensure everything is done the right way and with the child’s best interest in mind. Every case is well documented and filed, investigated and communications reports are catalogued and sorted to give our social workers access to up-to-date information.
The next stage in the process, after the child has been taken of the streets and rescued is to provide for him/her an adequate care and environment until the child is reunited with his\hers family or a foster family is ready to accept them. The children often wait at the Government Rehabilitation Centre where they have food, bed, and care. Our team visits the centre every week and works with the children there. We bring food, play games with them, we provide education, we talk to them, pray with them and try to motivate them to go back home and leave the life on the streets. The reality is that sometimes there are children that run away and go back to the streets. Our aim is to do our best to prepare the children for the next stage, send them back to their families or place them in good foster home. Only in such safe environment, the process of rehabilitation can begin.
The restoration and transformation of the child is a long process and it often involves the family as well.
Most of the street children come from broken homes and dysfunctional families. Various factors and reasons have played a decisive role in the life of the children to make them choose the streets as an alternative. Often those reasons involve parents with alcohol or dug addictions, domestic abuse, poverty. etc. This is why in the process of restoration we put a great emphasis on restoring and transforming the family as well. We have a holistic approach assessing the economic, social, cultural and spiritual state of the family and we put together a comprehensive plan of action that will allow us in time to empower and enable the family to make the necessary changes to improve the quality of life and relationships with the child. We organise and provide programs (EPCP) that help the families and equips the parents to better understand and deal with the challenges of parenthood and economic, economic and financial challenges and addiction challenges. We also work to provide help with the school tuition and fees for children in High-school and College education. We rely on our donors and network of support to raise this funds to proved future for our children.