INTRODUCTION TO CHILDREN PROGRAMS

The most recent research findings on care and support for orphans and other vulnerable children (OVC) continue to show that family environments produce better outcomes than institutional care. HOPE worldwide Kenya will therefore continue to support OVC using family and community structures in 2011. The focus on households is being accelerated and involves making them the primary entry and intervention units.

Rural sites such as Kiambu and Kibwezi were already using the household approach with great success. The major challenge is therefore in urban sites where community and extended family structures are much weaker and HWWK was mainly using a school-based/ Kids Clubs model. As this challenge is bravely undertaken, focus in both rural and urban sites is now on strengthening household livelihoods through several economic empowerment initiatives. These initiatives will continue to build on experiences already gained by HWWK in this area.

Finally, the HWWK Mathare site has been participating in a pilot OVC care and support Quality Assurance and Improvement program which is led by the Department of Children Services. The pilot was pivoted around using the Child Status Index (CSI) tool to periodically assess the status of OVC as they are supported. In 2011, HWWK will take this process to scale in all OVC projects. The CSI tool has already been incorporated in the Child Intake Form and now collects baseline data upon which outcome analysis will be based.