CHILD SPONSORSHIP PROGRAM (CSP)
The main goal of Child Sponsorship Program is to support orphans and vulnerable children within communities through sustainable interventions aimed at addressing their holistic needs. Child Sponsorship Program contributes to AICCAD’s overall objective of promoting the development of vulnerable children to achieve their full physical, intellectual, social and spiritual potential by providing safe spaces, championing children rights and strengthening the community fabric.
Child Sponsorship Program is implemented through two approaches namely;
1. Institutional care of orphans and vulnerable children (Rescue & Reintegration)
Currently AICCAD supports six rescue homes for orphans and vulnerable children situated in different parts of the country namely: Achego in Kisumu County, Litein in Kericho County, Siyiapei in Narok County, Mufu in Embu County, Kathonzweni in Makueni County and Tumaini in Trans-Nzoia County. The homes support a total of 600 children by providing care and protection through a well laid down structure of staff and volunteers.
Children under the Institutional Care are rescued from the community for a specified period of time through the children’s office and committed to the rescue homes with individual case plan. Each of the children’s case plans is developed between the rescue home, the children’s office, the caregivers of the child and the court for legal protection. The social workers in the rescue homes work closely with the children’s office and the caregivers to ensure that the issues that led to the rescue of children are adequately addressed within the stipulated time frame before the child is reintegrated back to the community. After reintegration of the children, a follow up plan is carried out by the social worker to ensure that the issues which led to the rescue of the child have been adequately addressed to avoid a relapse.
Summary of services provided for children in the rescue home:
• Education Support
This includes provision of scholastic materials, payment of school fees and other related school levies to all the children committed to the rescue homes. Children are also provided with school uniforms, shoes, school bags and books so that they are retained in school. Educational clinics are also carried out for children during school holidays to enable them perform well in school and to help the slow learning children to catch up with the others.
• Nutritional support.
The program provides adequate and quality nutrition to all the children. Each of the children’s homes has a Kitchen garden and a food security project to ensure children’s nutritional requirements are adequately addressed. Special attention is also given to children with special needs to ensure that their nutritional requirements are adequately addressed.
• Spiritual support
The program implements a daily bible study program for all the children living in the home. In addition, the organization also supports vocational bible school for children and annual children’s camps targeting all age groups of children.
• Psychosocial and life skills training
This includes provision of counseling services to vulnerable children who are rescued and brought to the homes for care and protection. Most of the children referred to the homes by the police or through court orders have special psychosocial needs that are adequately addressed before they are reintegrated back to the community. All children are also taken through life skills training to enable them cope with various life challenges.
• Health and physical support
The program provides adequate clothing and bedding for children. In addition the children receive training on hygiene, disease prevention and are also taken for medical checkups, screening and treatment whenever they fall sick.
2. Community based program for orphans and vulnerable children
The program provides community-based care and support for both orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) and their caregivers. The key strategy employed in this program includes provision of direct support to orphans and vulnerable children. These include education, nutrition, vocational skills and psychosocial support to the children .Other activities encompass strengthening the economic coping mechanisms of the families/households. The activities comprise of livelihood support to the guardians, training on micro economic development, provision of seed capital and creation of relevant linkages for support. The project has currently enlisted 3500 orphaned and vulnerable children in 18 project sites in Kisumu, Kericho, Laikipia, Narok, Nyeri, Embu, Machakos, Kitui, Makueni and Trans-Nzoia Counties.
• 12,000 orphaned and vulnerable children with their families have been supported through the community based child sponsorship program in the past five years.
• 2,000 orphaned and vulnerable children have been supported through the rescue and reintegration child sponsorship program in the past five years.
• 10,000 households have benefitted from the household economic strengthening initiatives under the child sponsorship program for the past five years.
• 14,000 children under both the community based and the rescue programs have benefitted from educational support.
• 5,000 orphaned and vulnerable children from the community based child sponsorship program have graduated from tertiary institutions with various skills for self and wage employment for the past five years.