Kyaka II refugee settlement, close to the border of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), has approximately 700 new arrivals each week over 65% of which are children. Having fled armed conflict, ebola, and horrific human rights abuses, many suffer extreme trauma as a result of witnessing the brutality of war and displacement. They face serious child protection risks and have nowhere safe to go during the day.
The youngest refugee children need support
A number of NGOs are providing primary education in Kyaka II, but early years education provision is limited for the youngest children, at a vital time in their development. Our assessment showed a need for up to 30 Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centres across 30 communities within the settlement.
In these communities, local people are doing the best they can to provide early years learning, but provision and resources are variable at best. While some communities are doing well, with Centres in a relatively good state of repair, others have non-existent provision and broken down venues that are not fit for purpose. Many Centres lack consistent quality teacher training, or well established community ownership. Without this, trained teachers have no incentive to use their training locally, and leave to find jobs in other areas of Uganda, and communities have no support or resources to maintain provision.
Resourcing communities to provide early years education
Through training and targeted resourcing, we aim to support 30 refugee communities in Kyaka II camp, to replicate our model of best practice, ensuring high quality, cost effective ECD for their children.
With multiple conflicts stretching across vast areas of the country, The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is one of the world’s most complex and long-standing humanitarian situations.
Civilians here are exposed to gross human rights violations, sexual and gender-based violence, chronic malnutrition, and various health epidemics including the serious spread of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).
We're delighted to share that fundraisers running the Brighton Marathon and London Marathon this year have raised an incredible £8000 for Children on the Edge.
It was a record-breaking number of runners for us at both events this year; with seven people running the Brighton Marathon and two runners taking on the infamous London Marathon.
We caught up with some of them after their races to see what they had to say.....
Mhairi chose to run the Brighton Marathon for Children on the Edge after a visit to refugee camps in Lebanon inspired her to want to make a difference. She was the first of our runners over the finish line in 4 hours and 15 minutes. She said: “I really enjoyed my first marathon and I am so chuffed to have been able to support your amazing charity”.
Todd was very nervous at the start of the race; a knee injury that had been plaguing him throughout training and he was unsure if he'd be able to manage the gruelling 26.2 miles. But he did it! He said: “That was quite the experience. My legs aren’t feeling great but I am so happy. It was an absolute honour to run for you guys, and it really helped knowing that the pain I felt was just temporary compared to that of the children that you work with. I was always going to finish!”.
Seasoned runner Andy who was marking his 50th birthday with the Brighton Marathon was disappointed with his time but had a different perspective. He said: “I was 5 minutes slower than last time but helping the Children in the Edge cause more than made up for that!".
Children on the Edge sadly aren't able to access charity places for the London Marathon but we were were delighted when supporters Alice and Tracey got in touch to say that had been successful in getting a ballot place and wanted to run for Children on the Edge.
With a whopping 42,500 finishers, the London Marathon is a such a special event and both Alice and Tracey were so pleased to have taken part.
Tracey said: ‘It was such an incredible day but so much tougher that I anticipated! The crowds were just phenomenal. Remembering why I was running in those last few miles really keep me going.”
First time marathon runner Alice said: ''That was the most incredible thing I’ve ever done and I’m so glad I could run for Children on The Edge and raise money for such a good cause”
Children on the Edge want to say a huge thank you to all our marathon runners who have taken on one of the toughest challenges over the last few weeks. Together, our team of superheroes have raised just over £8,000 for the work we do with vulnerable and forgotten children across the world.
Could you take on a running challenge for Children on the Edge? We can offer full fundraising support, along with a free running vest plus tips and advice from our resident marathon runner and Fundraising Officer, Kerry!
Naby, who ran the Brighton Marathon said: “I would encourage everyone to take on a challenge that makes you focus on a goal and to use that opportunity to raise money and awareness of charities like Children on the Edge”.
If you'd like to run the Brighton Marathon for us next year, find out more and apply for one of our charity places.
If you're lucky enough to get a place at the London Marathon in 2020, please consider running for Children on the Edge. Get in touch with us to find out more.
We are delighted to announce a new partnership for the month of May, with Scrap Car Comparison.
The nationwide scrap vehicle company is raising funds to support Children on the Edge throughout the whole of May.
Scrap Car Comparison has chosen Children on the Edge as their ‘Featured Charity for the Month’ as part of their charity support programme.
Eloise, Children on the Edge’s Fundraising Manager, says: “we are so thankful to be featured with Scrap Car Comparison during May, giving people from all over the UK the chance to hear about Children on the Edge for the first time, any donations big or small can make a huge impact to the lives of children living on the edge of their societies”
Scrap Car Comparison’s website offers free, instant scrap and salvage quotes. With a nationwide network of scrap car breakers, collectors and dedicated buyers, they work with Authorised Treatment Facilities and approved buyers across the UK – and all collections are free with no charges.
A spokesperson for Scrap Car Comparison said: “Children on the Edge is a charity which we already knew did fantastic work, as they are local to our Head Office in West Sussex. The opportunity to raise funds for them is the least we can do and we’ll be looking forward to raising as much as we can during May and hopefully further throughout 2019.”
You can call Scrap Car Comparison for free on 03333 44 99 50 to speak to one of their team today and donate any percentage of your car to Children on the Edge.
After three years of great progress with tented education in Bekaa Valley, nearly 300 Syrian refugee children have taken another huge step forward by moving to a brand new school.
Together with partners Triumphant Mercy (TM), after supporting the creation of four colourful tent schools in Bekaa Valley settlements over the last few years, all the students have now transitioned to a new central building in Zahle.
Over the past four years Children on the Edge have been working in partnership with Lebanese NGO - Triumphant Mercy, within the refugee communities in Bekaa Valley. Together we worked to provide quality, child friendly education for Syrian refugee children who are unable to access government or UN school provision.
Since 2014, through four tent schools and a Community Centre school in Beirut, we supported education for hundreds of children aged 6 -12. Each school had a bespoke curriculum, refugee teachers, vocational skills opportunities and an environment of warmth and safety, where children could blossom.
Over the last three years we worked with teachers and staff at the tent schools to monitor and evaluate the progress of the children through these schools. The evaluation was extremely positive and at the close of 2018 results showed:
Yesterday, voting kicked off for the world’s largest election, with Indians in 20 states casting their votes in the first of seven phases, leading up to counting on the 23rd May. With 900 million eligible voters, this is the largest election ever seen, but an illegal yet culturally pervasive caste system is stunting the course to genuine democracy.
Children on the Edge supports two active and engaged local partners in Patna, Bihar State. These organisations work to break the cycle of discrimination against the Dalit caste through education and community activism.
The caste system assigns individuals a certain hierarchical status according to Hindu beliefs. Traditionally there are four principal castes (divided into thousands of sub-categories) and a fifth category of people who fall outside of the caste system; the Dalits.
Veena Jacob who leads local organisation Navjeevan says “In the Bihar elections yesterday only 41% of voters turned out. Many Dalits were stopped from voting, even though the Dalit cause is not really a concern for any of the candidates. There was firing in Nawada constituency as people came to vote without ID cards. This firing was done by criminals, not by the police”.
Many Dalit people have no way of getting ID cards because of a lack of literacy or access to computers. The work we support here creates opportunities through local women’s groups where Dalit women can learn about their rights and legal entitlements and how to access them, from filling out forms and signing their names to protesting about the bad treatment of their children and learning how to start a small business. A new Computer Centre provides IT access and training.
Veena describes how “The situation is very intense during this period of election, which is taking place in stages. The people we work with are so poor they can easily be paid to vote a certain way and are very frightened not to follow through with it once they have taken money out of desperation”.
The Indian Constitution includes specific protections for Dalits, who are at the bottom of the social hierarchy and make up about 15 to 20 percent of the population, but as the election unfolds it remains to be seen whether they have any genuine opportunity to have a voice within the world’s largest democracy.
Through a brilliant array of events and activities, a small group of 12 and 13 year-old students from The Prebendal School in Chichester, inspired their fellow pupils to raise over £1,648 for Children on the Edge.
Year Eight students at The Prebendal School raise funds for a different charity each term. They are all encouraged to put a case forward for a chosen charity or cause before the decision is put to a vote amongst students and teachers.
Pupil, Lily Eitel, aged 13 decided to put forward Children on the Edge as her charity of choice in September 2018. She said:
“We were already aware that Children on the Edge was based in Chichester and we really wanted to support a local organisation that benefitted many children worldwide. This made it more real for all the Prebendal pupils”.
Lily prepared a formal presentation and encouraged as many students as possible to vote for us. She was delighted when Children on the Edge won the vote. She and her friends soon set about raising funds through a host of fun activities, including a drinks party for parents, cake sales, mufti days, a Christmas jumper day and a movie night.
Lily said: “We really enjoyed fundraising for COTE at The Prebendal. It made us all realise how privileged we are compared to all the children we helped”.
Eloise Armstrong, our Fundraising Manager visited the school last term to give a presentation in one of their weekly assemblies about our work and how the students' fundraising will be making a huge difference.
Recently, Eloise went back to collect a fundraising cheque for £1648. She said:
“As a Chichester-based charity, we were delighted to be chosen by the year 8 students at The Prebendal School. We were so impressed with the creativity and zeal of their fundraising activities. The money raised will help provide much needed education for refugee children in refugee camps and Internally Displaced Peoples’ camps in Bangladesh and Myanmar”.
Jane Garfield, Head of Languages and Year 8 tutor at Prebendal School said: “Our Year 8 pupils worked incredibly hard to raise money for this very worthy cause. We are really proud of them and it was because of their amazing efforts and endless enthusiasm that such a large amount of money was raised”.
We'd like to say a huge thank you to all the staff, parents, and especially the students at the school who helped to raise such an incredible amount of money.
If your school would like to fundraise for Children on the Edge, please email email@example.com or call our Fundraising Team on 01243 538530
Local art sale at Bordean House, Langrish (Petersfield) to raise funds for Children on the Edge.
When: Thursday 13 June, 6-9pm
Where: Bordean House, Langrish (Petersfield, Hampshire), GU32 1EP
Emma has designed two fabrics, one for the Rural Refugee Network and one for Children on the Edge and Angela has made them into a selection of items. Like wash bags and coin purses.
Every item is made with care, attention to detail and a smile and they are all under £20.
If you are local to Petersfield, Hampshire, do pop along to the 33 Art Sale on Thursday 13th June, from 6-9pm. You can follow them on Instagram here.