We know that in a perfect world, no child should ever go into residential care, and that is why our Family Preservation Program is the backbone of all that we do. Too often, children end up in orphanages because their parents have lost hope that their situation can improve, and believe that it is the only option. We empower families who are struggling (often due to poverty or the death of a mother in childbirth) to keep their children at home where they belong, through support services including education and food support, scholarships to our Daycare, business development training and support, and access to community banking. We have also helped keep many children at home through access to our community programs.
Residential care is sometimes necessary as a last resort, but it cannot replace a small, loving family. From the moment that a child is referred by local Social Services into our care, we work on a plan for eventual reunification. Our team works tirelessly to find a home for our residential children to return to – whether working with their parents to provide a safe home environment, working with extended family who are willing to eventually support them, or finding foster families in the community. The majority of our residential children spend time at home during school breaks, where our team can monitor how reunification efforts are progressing.
When children are reunified and return home, we continue to provide support to the family through regular visits, paying school fees, and access to our support services. Since opening TST’s doors, we have reunited more than 30 children with their families, and continue to visit and support them all.
TST believe in giving chances, not charity. Too often families fall into poverty simply because they don’t have the necessary skills or initial capital required to start and maintain a successful business. The families TST works with want to succeed, to be self-sufficient. Often all it takes is a little support.
We begin by creating thorough business plans with each client. Through business loans, grants, and/or livestock, we provide families with initial capital. Once the initial capital has been secured, TST continues to support the families by providing business training, mentorship, and capital to expand via microfinance loans.
Since the Family Preservation Program began, TST has provided integral support to more than 50 families with intensive business development and, in turn, have kept 150+ children living at home where they belong. The average income of families entering the program is $7 per month, and with the support of TST and our donors,most graduate the program with sustainable monthly earnings of at least $100 – a 1,400% increase!