Sharing Web Resources

Global Fund for Children

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http://www.globalfundforchildren.org/

Upon reviewing all the newsletters I have received thus far in my email, I have noticed the newsletters are not really articles, rather a plea to support the fund by contributing money or buying books, however when looking at their website I found many articles of the aid they have given different countries who have gone through a crisis. Also there are no articles that are new or the latest, however a publication titled “Safety” caught my eye and I felt it was current for professional development because it is our responsibility as educators to be aware of issues and trends regarding children and the impacts these issues and trends around the world have on early childhood.

The one issue I read in the publication is about child trafficking where children are forced to be soldiers, fishermen, servants, miners, weavers and sex workers. I was shocked to know that an estimated 5.5 million children and youth are engaged in forced labor worldwide. As a result I was so encouraged when I had read that in one of the countries namely the Republic of Congo, the Global Fund for Children are partnered with a group in Congo called the Bureau pour le Volontariat au Service de l’Enfance et de la Santé (BVES) that negotiate directly with armed groups to release child soldiers. The BVES group then support the children as they transition home, where they provide them with shelter therapy, education and help them reunite with their families.

Further down the publication I was happy to read how the Global Fund for Children reach the most vulnerable children through local organisations in various ways to aid and solve problems in communities. I was happy to read that holistic care is seen as the effective way to rescue, protect and provide for these children in terrible situations.

I found the following resource very helpful to understand this organisation a lot more and how they go about helping local communities rescue children in dangerous situations:

  1. Rehabilitation: by offering counselling, physical therapy, healthcare, food and nutritional support, and legal services.
  2. Advocacy: by fighting social stigma and discrimination, and by pushing for better laws and policies to protect children and youth SHELTER through transitional homes that meet children’s basic needs and provide critical social services.
  3. Shelter: by providing transitional homes that meet children’s basic needs and provide critical social services.
  4. Prevention: by training teachers, parents, police officers, social workers, and others to recognize when children are in jeopardy and to take action.
  5. Rescue from forced labor, hazardous environments, trafficking, sexual exploitation, and abuse and neglect REINTEGRATION by offering education, vocational and leadership training, and job placement, and by helping children to safely reunite with their families

The above resource helped me to realise and not forget that when rescuing children from terrible situations whether it be from their terrible home life to war stricken countries, that it is important for these children to receive therapy in a holistic manner, making sure all parties involved in the child’s rescue, therapy and rehabilitation should treat the children’s situation with sensitivity and care and to equip those who are helping in the different processes to guard themselves emotionally as well as equip with knowledge of how to help.

This website certainly has taken economists, neuroscientist and politicians thoughts and views to aid their fund with knowledge about how to take care of children who have been rescued from terrible situations worldwide, as well as given financial aid to help the fund rescue and rehabilitate these children. There are many corporate businesses and partners that donate part of their profits to the Global Fund for Children, where these partners have incorporated a social mission into their business models not only to help and provide for their own customers, but help vulnerable children all over the world. As a result this has a positive impact on the early childhood field all over the world, as this fund provides those who read this website how to rehabilitate children as referred to the resource I explained above. To name a few companies that support the Global Fund for Children are Nike, Johnson and Johnson and Catapult.

An insight that I gained from reading the next part of the publication was about child refugees in crisis and an alarming one in every two refugees worldwide is under the age of 18. Which means global displacement is at an all time high. As a result we can no longer ignore what is happening in this world we live in and we need to support funds such as the Global Fund for Children in their endeavours to help innocent children’s lives all over the world.

 

 

 

Getting to know my International contacts: Part 1

This week I got some wonderful answers to the questions about poverty that my professional contacts encounter in their professional lives and other issues they are concerned about throughout the world. They are as follows:

aus

From Jenny in Australia she had mentioned that she works in a low-socio economic, rural area,  where a lot of children from single parent families and children of farmers attend her school. Her school offers low fees so that all children can attend preschool and that the government does subsidies for low income and aboriginal people. Therefore a lack of money will not stop a child from being educated- which is great!

I had also asked Jenny if poverty is such a thing in Australia as you hardly hear about it on the news. Jenny had agreed with me and said you do not see it much on the news, especially in big cities, however poverty is an issue on the outskirts of the bigger cities in Australia.

The other issues Jenny had mentioned that she is concerned about in Australia and it seems as if the Australian government are concerned about them as well, which is terrorism, drugs and theft. She had said that just this week perpetrators walked into her house, took her keys and phone and drove off in her car. She said she was quite shocked and saddened by this as she lives in a lovely country town.

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From Jen in Auckland, New Zealand works in a school in a community that is urban and suburban with a range of people who come from different socio-economic conditions. In her school they currently have French, German, Hindi, Mandarin, Maori, English and Afrikaans children, parents, extended families and teachers.

Jen mentioned that in New Zealand, child poverty is an increasing concern and that the Children’s Commissioner put together an Expert Advisory Group (EAG) to address this issue and research from this group showed 25% of children, which is about 270 000 children, currently live in poverty in New Zealand. This is shocking!

She said that the EAG continued to show short and long term impacts on poverty in New Zealand. The EAG mentioned that child poverty is costly, as child poverty imposes costs on the children involved and in society.

For individual children, the short-term impacts include having insufficient nutritious food, going to school hungry and living in a cold, damp house. It often means missing out on important childhood opportunities like school outings and sports activities. The impacts also include lower educational achievement, worse health outcomes and social exclusion. These differential outcomes, as well as the neurological responses to growing up in poverty, mean that childhood poverty can leave life-time scars, which will result in;

Long term impacts such as reduced employment prospects, lower earnings, poorer health, and higher rates of criminal offending in adulthood.

Jen continued to say that the economic costs of child poverty are in the range of $6-8 billion per year and considerable sums of public money are spent annually on remedial interventions. Jen continued to say that she is currently involved in an initiative to boost educational achievement in her local community. The ‘Community of Learning’ cluster brings together local early childhood centres, primary and secondary schools. The aim is to create a shared vision for children to transition through their schooling with a supportive focus on targeted areas of learning, such as literacy. The Northcote community where she currently works in has areas of high transience amongst residents, due to a lower socio- economic demographic, which has led to an inconsistency in schooling, and as a result educational data on their achievement also becomes inconsistent.
To conclude, how sad is it that poverty is so widespread and how all the issues of crime, violence, abuse are all somehow linked to poverty. Poverty is certainly a big issue in the world we live in and if we try our best to combat poverty slowly but surely by taking part in organisations and local communities who are fighting poverty, I am very sure we will overcome not only the poverty issues, but other issues that are linked and caused by poverty. I am really encouraged to know from my contacts that governments are helping to combat poverty in their countries and I am certainly encouraged by Jen, from New Zealand to become more involved in my local community.

Sharing Web Resources

The organisation I chose in the previous week to learn more about is the Global Fund for Children: http://www.globalfundforchildren.org/

As previously mentioned in my blog post of last week this organisation helps children from all around the world who are in terrible situations such as child trafficking, working on mines, working as slaves, soldiers, refugees and so forth. The Global Fund for Children works along with grassroots organizations that find and invest in small, local led organisations where cash grants, services help to achieve their goals of helping children in their areas. The fund helps these local organisations by:

  • Providing management assistance.
  • Capacity building expertise.
  • Networking opportunities to increase growth.
  • Financial support to increase their visibility to future donors who can help them help more children in the years to come.

Although I did not receive an email from Global Fund for Children this past week, other than a welcoming email to say thanks for joining. I came across the heading “Our Impact” and I was glad to see that under this heading they give a detailed explanation of how they operate and make an impact. One of the sub-headings were “We find what works” and this reminded be of the video segment this week by Laureate Education (2011) where Dr. Grace had mentioned that we need to realise how society is changing and find a way to accept these changes and help multi-cultural families the best way we can to suit their needs. This is exactly what Global Fund for Children do they look for already established small organisations and help fund their efforts to help those children in that particular area take care of their specific needs.

Another interesting fact I picked up on when reading more about this organisation is that up until now they have helped more than 10 million children by giving more than 34 million dollars in grants to more than 600 grassroots organizations in 78 countries.

Wow!

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Reference:

Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2011). Issues and trends in the early childhood field: The effects of changing demographics and diversity on children, families, and the early childhood field [Video webcast]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu/webapps/blackboard/content/listContent.jsp?course_id=_16233337_1&content_id=_37674824_1

 

Establishing Professional Contacts and Expanding Resources

Professional Contacts

I am so excited about the professional contacts I have established this week!

My first professional contact is from New South Wales, Australia, her name is Jenny Bridge. I found Jenny through a facebook group called Teachers around the world Preschool Penpals (thank you to Dr. Davis for the link in the announcement board). Jenny has been teaching for 30 years, teaching children between the ages of 3 to 5 years old. So far I know that she loves to paint!

My second professional contacts name is Jennifer Boyd. I found Jennifer through a colleague and friend of mine. She is from Auckland, New Zealand and she has been teaching for around 7 years. She teaches children between the ages of 3 to 5 and half years. I will be in contact with Jennifer over email.

Expanding Resources

Global fund for Children

The resource I chose to expand my knowledge and awareness of what is happening in the world is Global Fund for Children. The sentence that caught my eye on this organisations website is ‘we do all we can to let kids be kids, no matter their circumstances’. As result the Global Fund for Children organisations fights for children’s rights and help children to pursue their dreams. The children they reach out too are children from around the world who are in such violent situations such as war, slavery, trafficking, child labour and so forth. I have subscribed to their weekly newsletters and hope to be able to learn and contribute to this organisation in some form or other.