April 2017 Newsletter

Transforming communities by serving vulnerable children and families 
through education, health care and spiritual mentoring.

Family Strengthening Program Builds Attachment for Children and Parents

In an effort to strengthen the bonds between residential children and the families with whom they will be reunified, the CRC launched a Family Strengthening Program in 2017.  The program focuses on regular and ongoing training of the receiving families in topics such as discipline and helping children to study, as well as Nurturing Hearts training on how to help children with trauma and attachment disorders to transition into the home and form strong attachments to one another. Ongoing efforts are being made to provide opportunities for children to spend time building relationships with their families prior to, during and following reunification. The CRC has also recently hired an additional Counselor whose job it will be to ensure that families and children outside the residence are bonding and attaching well.
In March, meetings between parents and the child to be reunified with them were held to help families to get to know one another better, and enjoy some social time together. Families and children also spend time meeting with the Residential Aunties who care for each child, and with the Residential Counselor. Over the Easter break, children had the opportunity to spend one or two nights with their families at their homes.
According to Mabel Mustapha, "the reunified children are so happy and the parents too are very happy for this opportunity.  The new program not only provides opportunity for bonds to be established well before reunification, but also allows the CRC Staff to observe the families and children together and handle any concerns that might come up, sooner rather than later."  
CRC Microfinance Program Participants Learn Valuable New Skills

CRC Microfinance classes are continuing to meet every Friday at the CRC, and with 8 sessions behind them, have now reached the midterm point of the first phase of the 3-phase program.  25 participants, many handicapped, regularly attend these sessions, and all participants are attempting to complete every assignment.  Those who are not literate are given the opportunity to share their work verbally with the class. 

Overall, the response is very positive.  "I have learnt a lot from this training and I now know how to budget and not to overspend anymore.  I now can save and know the reasons I am saving money," says Nancy Jusu.  Baindu Sombu agrees, "I am expecting to gain very good knowledge at the end of these lessons on how to save, do business, spend money or manage income.  And I have even started implementing some of the knowledge - especially deciding the priority of the things I may want to use money on which I never knew before."

Students will be coached in the development of a simple business plan at the end of the first phase of the training.

CRC Residential Students Conduct Outreach to Cheshire Home

On Sunday, 9th April, 2017, some of the CRC Residential children took food to the Cheshire Home  in Bo.  The Cheshire Home is a residential facility for handicapped children.  

Led by the Children's Voice student organization of the CRC, this outreach enabled the CRC to bless the Cheshire Home children with gifts of rice, onions, oil, peppers and various spices.  The children also sang songs together, and the CRC children led a Bible study, prayed for the children, and enjoyed some fun time playing games with them.  

"It was a wonderful moment as the CRC children saw other children in wheelchairs, and they were happy that they could help in their own way," said Director Mohamed Nabieu. 
2016 Annual Report

The 2016 Annual Report is available on our website. Click here to view and download.  Thank you for your faithful and generous support in 2016.

In this Newsletter
Rear view of Mercy Operating Suite

Mercy Operating Suite Continues to Grow
Construction continues smoothly on the Operating Suite extension at Mercy Hospital.  The second floor walls are up, and the roof framing has begun.  Not only will this extension increase the physical capacity of Mercy Hospital, but the ability to offer surgeries like C-sections in its two Operating Theatres will increase Mercy's capacity to offer life-saving care to the people of Bo.
Mercy Nutrition Outreach Continues to Save Malnourished Children

Nancy, an 18 year old mother of a three year old boy and a nine month old daughter named Betty, recently attended a Mercy Outreach to Tikonkoh.  There, her daughter Betty was found to be severely malnourished, weighing only 8.5 lbs.  She was so dehydrated that her forehead was obviously sunken in. 

Betty was referred to Mercy Hospital where she received IV fluids and was enrolled in the Nutrition Program. It took Betty a few days to get used to the Bennimix food supplement adopted by Mercy Hospital in 2017, as it is much more nutritious and protein-rich than the food she was used to. Gradually, she got used to it and began feeding regularly. Mother and baby were discharged from Mercy to continue feeding at home.  Betty will continue to be tracked at monthly Mercy Outreaches, and will continue to receive Bennimix supplements until she achieves a healthy weight and can graduate out of the Nutrition Program.

Baby Mamie, whose story was reported in the March newsletter, was also revisited at the Tikonkoh Outreach.  She continues to improve, having gained another two pounds since her  release from Mercy Hosptial in mid-March.  Like Betty, Mamie will continue to be monitored and to receive Bennimix through Mercy's Nutrition Program.

Please join us at Sip & Shop

Join us TOMORROW Saturday, April 22 from 1 PM-4:30 PM at Lord & Taylor in Dulles Town Center for a fashion show and shopping event to benefit Helping Children Worldwide.  The event features hors d'oeuvres, wine and a DJ.  After the show, you can try on the styles you like and enjoy 20% off your purchases. 

Have You Seen Our 
New Fundraising Policy?
We love when our Partnership Churches and supporters raise funds on behalf of Helping Children Worldwide for the Child Rescue Centre and Mercy Hospital Programs in Sierra Leone, and the HCW staff is always eager to help assist you with your fundraising efforts.  It's important that all such efforts run through HCW so that we can ensure that efforts are in alignment with the mission priorities of those in the field.  Helping Children Worldwide works very closely with the staff of the Child Rescue Centre and Mercy Hospital to identify priorities for fundraising and donations.    

To avoid potential confusion, our new policy requires that any fundraising or donation requests that are officially sanctioned by HCW bear the Executive Director's signature.  

If you or your church are interested in conducting a drive or fundraiser, please contact Laura Horvath so we can support your efforts!
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