LIFE OPTIONS

EDUCATION

Life options program is a new initiative program focussed on education and family. It is an initiative to help boys who wants to continue with their education and better their lives despite of their family background. Life options will raise funds to sustain the program.

The programs objectives are to increase awareness of better life choices among the youth at Percy Bartley House and in the community. It is anticipated that motivated youth will respond to help positively.

CHALLENGES

  • Parents experience difficulties in dealing with the behaviour of their children.
  • Factors that contributes largely to this problems of children includes,  conduct of parents, negative peer pressure, and negative influences of peers and adults, frustration of not coping academically.
  • Many parents feel disempowered and cannot be of assistance to teachers at school who need them to apply disciplinary measure at home?
  • Another obstacle is that the youth over 18 year is not funded, although they need the support in continuing their studies or school. Most families don't have the financial capacity to support their children into studies. Life options program starts a fundraising campaign for this need.
  • Also when youth act out at school Life options program has become a much-needed necessity in finding solutions for continuing education.

OUTCOMES

  • Helping families to resolve problems and helping the children to spend time with their families
  • Healing for children who have experience abuse and helping with those who have behavioural problems.
  • To assist unschooled youth who left school early continue or skill development course
  • To provide the boys with knowledge and skills to make responsible choices
  • To support youth (especially over 18) with independent, critical and innovative thinking

RESOURCES

  • Funding to meet the needs of children in education e.g. school uniforms, shoes, stationeries and school fees for boys in special schools and funds for academic studies for the youth over 18.
  • Transport money to school
  • School outing

COST

It costs a significant amount to feed, clothe and provide for all of our boys' daily needs. While the state covers a portion of the costs, this is not sufficient to meet the needs for running of the home.

It cost R 60 per day to take care of the child and R1 600 per month.

HOW TO SUPPORT

Your monthly support goes towards education, School uniform and special programs.

You can wish to sponsor a child at Percy Bartley House per month:  R250, R500 or R1000 - once off gifts and gifts in kind are warmly welcomed.

Make a Donation to our Life Options Programme

LIFE OPTIONS

The many difficult circumstances that face our children seem to be irreversible whilst he is still in the face of that circumstance. This then causes them to leave their homes and run away to join up with a life on the street that proves to be more destructive than the initial disruptive circumstance. This would be the kind of child that would be brought to our centre at any given time [day or night]. Our staff works throughout the night to ensure that our doors are open at all times.

Any child placed on an emergency form [form 4] can only stay for a maximum of 48 hrs. During such time all the relevant history and home visit/investigation needs to be forwarded to the court to ascertain the next medium of care for the children.

The purpose for this care is to provide children with an opportunity to get the help he and their family may need in order to help ensure a better living environment for all involved.

  • To identify and determine the causes of the apparent neglect.
  • To help close the gap between the youth and his family as soon as possible.
  • To serve as a service provider to children on behalf of the department of social service and poverty alleviation.

Make a Donation to our Emergency Placement Programme

 EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMES

 FORMAL SCHOOLING

Boys are assessed and placed back into mainstream schooling as soon as possible (depending on the gap in his own circumstances). In the event of this gap being too big, he will be referred to a bridging school programme which will aid in developing the youth from where he is to where he needs to be. This process could be short term or long term. It is always dependant on the youth.

SKILL DEVELOPMENT

Another way we develop the youth while he is in our care is to link him to the skill development programme offered by the Salesians Institute in the City CBD.

BRIDGING SCHOOL

This bridging school is situated on one of the City Mission campuses. The school is registered by the department of education and is managed by a professional body of qualified teachers, ensuring the best possible care for every child referred to its services. The name of the school is City Mission Education Centre.

The school aims to divert the youth back into mainstream schooling as soon as one proves ready to do so.

The school [in conjunction with the PBH] facilitates the process of enrolment to the school of choice. Most times it would be the school last attended by the youth.

INFORMAL EDUCATION

Very few boys are ready to return to formal schools. It is our responsibility to assess each boy in terms of their developmental level, to plan for their next level of care. This process is referred to as the IDP [Individual Development Plan]. This process includes finding the most suitable education or skills programme that would fit his profile.

Boys who have lived on the street for long periods at a time, or who have been without a stable home environment often prove to be very difficult to engage with within the classroom setting. We therefore try to ensure smaller ratios of child to teachers.

The school would independently be responsible for assessing the individual child and recommend whether they would stay at the bridging school or be sent to mainstream schooling.

Make a Donation to a Child's formal Education

COUNCELLING & THERAPY

We have over years understood that dealing with the emotional dimension of the young persons life proves to be of enormous benefit to the further care plan of the youth. Unless we deal with the emotional trauma the youth has been confronted with, we will never be able to impact the other areas of his life.

DRUG RELATED

This rehabilitative process is a very specific one and thus calls for professional intervention. Networking with folk like the Cape Town Drug Counseling Center and Narcotics Anonymous eases the care process for the youth. The Counseling center attaches a minimum cost and is one of the few in the country, which renders the service it does.

Understanding the complexities of the individuals need will always teach us how valuable partnerships of all kinds would be for the advancement of the youth's care plan.

PEER SUPPORT GROUP

The power of peer support is another such factor, which has also proved to be a very needed therapeutic tool for the care plan of the youth

Make a Donation to break the cycle of substance abuse 

HIV & AIDS SUPPORT GROUP

The HIV/Aids program is a program to care and support those who are infected and affected by HIV/Aids and families of the boys.

Chapel Clinic counselor facilitated the support group once a week. We have also decided that the support group be educational, fun for all the boys.

  • They boys in the home are also encouraged to get tested.
  • The workshops addressed the following topics:
  • HIV and pregnancy
  • HIV in our lives / families
  • Abstenance
  • Condom use/ voluntary counseling and testing
  • Anti-retrovirals and children
  • Nutrition
  • Treatment and Support
  • After care- following up with families who have HIV, making sure that they continue their treatment.
  • Food parcels for the homeless people on treatment.

Make a Donation to our HIV/AIDS support Group 

 FAMILY PRESERVATION

 Staff is tasked with having meetings with the child's family.

Early intervention in family conflict often arising from different values between parents and children is key for the future success plan of the youth.

A process of family conferencing is facilitated by the project staff on home visits, ensuring that all get the opportunity to share their thoughts/feelings.

Working with the family as a whole is the only way to bring about effective, holistic change between a young person and their family.

Make a Donation to our Family Preservation Programme

MENTORING PROGRAMME

This is a very intense method of facilitating paradigm shifts. Many of the young men we work with develop a sense of care for their peers and find themselves giving back to their peers. Once the continuum of care has proved to be of worth to them, they become the best tool to help encourage those coming along the path they once walked.

At some point when a mentor is identified, the manager will engage him and delegate certain responsibilities within the centre, giving him a sense of purpose.

It is incumbent on the manager to help build the mentor's capacity to become the best he can become. He would need to understand how he ought to conduct himself in the capacity of a mentor around his peers [whom he is now leading].

He is expected to be a good role model at all times.

Make a Donation to our Mentoring Programmes

 Arts & Crafts

Art classes occupy their minds restructuring their focus into positive directions. This gives them opportunity to express feeling and emotions through art expression.