Out of an estimated 8 million children living in institutions across the world, reports say that more than 80% are not orphans. In Nepal, there are currently 16,886 children living in 572 registered residential care facilities or orphanages. Many of them were separated from their families with the promise of care of education. The reality is that very often they are exploited and abused, and used to attract well intentioned foreigners to ‘visit an orphanage’ to solicit ‘donations’.
In partnership with Forget Me Not, we created our Change Agent Program that aims to educate families in remote, rural areas of Nepal about children’s rights, child abuse and the harms of keeping children in institutional care. And to help all parents everywhere understand that no matter how poor they are, the family is the best place for a child.
So far, we are proud to say that over 16,000 adults were educated on the harms of institutionalising children. Based on learnings, achievements and need from the successful change agents pilot program in Jharlang, we have expanded the prevention program in adjacent Ree village of Dhading district. Ree is another earthquake affected village where more than 90% of the villagers are living in temporary shelters enduring harsh conditions.
What you should know.
Visiting or supporting such institutions has been proven to fuel the orphanage industry. The institutionalisation of children tears families apart, places more children at risk of exploitation and perpetuates child trafficking.
How do I know my donation will make an impact?
The Acts of Kindness Collective operates a 100% model. This means that we raise money for any overheads separately, so that 100% of your donation to a specific campaign can always be guaranteed to be spent on that project.