The Safe House provides a place where current street children and youths can come three times a week to gain support and guidance in how to move away from a life on the streets. They receive three meals a day and engage in activities such as football, basketball and music.
A middle ground is so important in getting children away from street and gang life, finding out the core reasons why they are on the streets and working in ways for them to gain an education and have a safe place to call home.
The long term plan for this house is to make it a temporary home for 6 – 12 street children and youths to live in at a time, whilst adjusting to a life away from the streets and supporting them in their new life.
The Safe House provides breakfast, lunch and dinner, three times a week for children and youths living on the streets or in vulnerable situations. This saves the children and youths from engaging in heavy labour or stealing in order to be able to gain food.
Many street children and youths are lacking vital guidance and support, and in many cases have never had this in their lives at all. Guiding them away from street life, supporting them in a way to get out of this life and providing a safe place to live is so important.
Education is the key out of poverty and is the main goal for many street children. Children and youths coming to the safe house are supported in ways to get back into education or for some learning to read and write first. Educational support, or enrolment in college courses is a main way for children to start their lives away from the streets.
The children and young adults that visit the Safe House all have different story’s and therefore all need different types of support. For many of these children and young adults they have been on the streets for most of their lives and do not know any different. Guiding them into a new way of life with new behaviours whilst supporting them with a safe place to live are the first steps. After this supporting them in school or college, or helping them find a small income job is the first stage in a life away from the streets for many.
For some children who visit the safe house they are on the streets as their relatives cannot afford food or their school needs, leading to them not being able to gain an education. It can cost as little as £30 to get a child back to school. After this, food support is needed for the family so that the child can go to school rather than searching for money for food. Long term sustainability is the main goal, which is why in these situations, setting up the child’s relative with a micro-enterprise, small business usually around £100 – £200. This then allows them a sustainable income to purchase food and support educational needs.
Some children and youths at the age of 16 or 17 have never had the chance to read or write. In these cases we find suitable tuition for these youths in order to get them up to a standard where they can be accepted to study a labouring course, in order to gain a life skill that can allow them an income.
However for many street children and youths they do not have a safe relative to live with or place to call home and so other ways are used to find a safe environment for them to call home.
The Safe House focuses on each individual case and finds the best way to support each child and young adult who comes here.