Find out how Mariyammal broke the cycle of poverty By Pamela Vijay,
Access to quality early-childhood development (ECD) services is a challenge in the rural community of Meguet. The government has made efforts for years, but the need is greater than the available support. Children Believe is working closely with the municipality and the community to improve access to and quality of integrated ECD services in the area for children up to the age of eight. We’re also working with adults to build stronger, safer and more efficient ECD and primary education systems and services that are given equal importance and investment.
At the end of the project, we hope to reach more than 4,500 children, nearly 1,700 parents, more than 60 teachers and more than 240 internally displaced children while also setting up and strengthening seven community-based child-protection groups.
In Burkina Faso, state stats show women are having more than six children each, and more than 60 percent of the population is in their early 20s. So, Children Believe partnered with Educo, Terre des Hommes and Association Burkinabè pour le Bien Être Familial in the Center North, North and Sahel Regions to help address the growth of vulnerable populations. The goals are to promote family planning by training adolescent girls and boys about their sexual and reproductive health and strengthening birth-registration systems, among other issues.
One in three infants don’t have a birth certificate in rural Burkina Faso, according to government reports. This will make it difficult for them to access adequate healthcare and eventually school. So, Children Believe helped make birth registration universal in the Central-North, East and Central East regions of Burkina Faso by sharing why it’s important to get a birth certificate when a child is born. We also made services more accessible, connecting moms who give birth at home with local networks to report statistical birth data. We also supported civil registrars, so they’re better equipped to issue certificates.
This project supported 90 percent of newborns in the target areas, more than 2,250 villages, more than 5,190 community health workers, more than 430 health workers and more than 20 community child-protection network officers, among others.
This project supported children who lost one parent (or more) or who suffered psychological disorders due to armed conflict by radical groups, which has displaced more than one-million people. Psycho-social and psychological care was provided as well as cash transfers and emergency kits to families of the most vulnerable children. We spurred long-term plans to ensure a brighter future for all.
The support benefited 6,000 to 20,000 children aged three to 17, including 3,660 girls as well as children taking refuge in host communities, among others.