Pop-up schools!

It is truly awesome that we can make ‘schools’ pop up anywhere they’re needed!!

When you donate to projectHELP and our Brighter Futures Study Centres you are providing direct assistance to children and young people living in compounding challenging circumstances.

You are funding a smorgasbord of opportunity. You are paving the way for brighter futures.

Every child needs champions, a team of people who believe in them no matter what. Thanks champs!

Only part way there

Australia Outlawing Orphanage Tourism Goes Only Part of the Way

Australia is the first country in the world to outlaw orphanage tourism. This can go part of the way, but we each have to take responsibility and do our research to ensure the ‘help’ we send abroad has the intended positive effect.

Co-founder of Learning Service and co-author of the new book ‘Learning Service: The Essential Guide to Volunteering Abroad’ Claire Bennett reports here.

Interview with Kate van Doore on RN Breakfast

FMN co-founder of Forget Me Not, international children’s rights lawyer and an academic at Griffith Law School who specialises in human trafficking (especially orphanage trafficking), modern slavery and child rights, hit the airwaves this morning.

Australia is the first country in the world to recognise orphanage trafficking as a form of modern-day slavery.

We believe around 80 per cent of children in orphanages around the world have at least one living parent but are in orphanages in a bid to attract international volunteers and significant donor dollars.

We call this “orphanage trafficking” and know first-hand that children are actively recruited into orphanages for the purpose of exploitation and profit made from orphanage tourism, where people pay or donate to volunteer and visit orphanages.

Your good deeds may be harming children rather than helping them.

LISTEN NOW

Australia’s first Modern Slavery Bill is passed

BREAKING NEWS

An historic day as Australia’s first Modern Slavery Bill is passed.

Modern Slavery Bill 2018

Orphanage trafficking and exploitation in orphanages is captured in the Act’s definition of modern slavery.

Orphanage tourism has now been recognised as a modern slavery risk!

Thank you Senator Linda Reynolds for your tireless advocacy.

Congratulations to our team at ReThink Orphanages Australia in this monumental win.

As momentum builds to rethink orphanages, we hope other countries will follow suit.

Learn how to be part of the solution at www.loveyougive.org

BBC News: Australia says orphanage trafficking is modern-day slavery

 

 

Meet Rajan and Suraj

Reuniting families makes us proud.

Two brothers, eleven year-old Rajan and ten year-old Suraj were brought to Asha Orphanage seven years ago by their mother Manmaya because she couldn’t contact her husband nor afford to pay their school fees.

She used to visit them in every three months because her village was just two hours away. Each visit pulled at her heartstrings when the boys would ask, “Mummy, when will you take us home forever?”

Manmaya wants desperately to take care and raise her children. She has worked hard to get her boys home. Manmaya says raising her children to be thriving, vibrant and connected to family, community and opportunity will not be such a struggle now that she has financial independence through her newly established canteen earning around USD 200 per month.

Finally, Manmaya can take her boys home forever.

On 28 May 2018 Rajan and Suraj returned home to their village and family life with their mother, older brother, maternal grandparents, aunt, uncle and two cousins!

These two boys were super excited to meet their grandparents. Their 17 year-old brother was there to welcome them home. Their grandmother says the boys are eating truckloads of food, which she understands is a combination of teenage hood and seven years of institutionalisation.

All the mothers are grateful for their children to be home, happy and healthy. The boys feel safe and are having a great time at their local community school near home.

The Love You Give

After watching this short film (or before) you can take the VOLUNTEERING PLEDGE that:

Children belong in families, not orphanages. I pledge to not volunteer in orphanages and #changevolunteering for the better.

Or, if you’re still thinking of volunteering, you can view this VOLUNTEER CHECKLIST online to make sure your time overseas is spent making a genuine difference. Unfortunately, some volunteer-sending companies may be more concerned with creating a ‘life-changing’ experience for the volunteer, with less focus on the purpose and the needs of local communities.

We need your help.

There are many ways to help us get this message out. One of the best ways we find is to share stories. Real stories. You might recognise these two remarkable women. Namrata and Purnima bravely share their experiences with humility and hope for change.

We invite you to share their stories.

Be a storyteller and help change the world for children.

 

Meet Raju

Reuniting families makes us proud.

A local Pastor moonlighting as a broker trafficking children into orphanages coaxed 7 year-old Raju’s poverty-stricken family to admit their son into Asha Orphanage so they had one less mouth to feed. The family was only allowed to visit once during the seven years Raju was held at the orphanage.

Raju is now 14 years old and went home to his mum and dad and five siblings on 4 June 2018. We continue to support the family by assisting with education costs. His mother believes Raju’s 10 year-old brother looks older than him because he was starved for seven years in the orphanage and he is underdeveloped and malnourished. Raju is really enjoying school and loves being home with his family.

Orphanages as trafficking hubs

Today the story of Forget Me Not and our research and advocacy on orphanage trafficking was shared at the Trust Conference in London.

A powerful voice was Zafina, who spoke about her experience.

For those who say to us,”Yes this is a tragedy, but it is not happening in the orphanage/hostel/childcare home/shelter that we support or visit” – Think again! The stories are the same. Children belong in families not orphanages.

Please watch and listen to the impact of orphanage trafficking, and why volunteering in orphanages is never a good idea.

 

CHOOSE LOVE

Lovin’ the new Boom Shankar tee with sales supporting FMNs work with children and families. Get one for everyone!

Which colour do you like best? Dreamland Navy or Juniper?

Click on your fav to find out more 🙂