Helping Children Worldwide Overview
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Target demographics: children and families
Direct beneficiaries per year: 13,500
Geographic areas served: Northern Virginia and Sierra Leone
Programs: Helping Children Worldwide has three distinct programs that meet the mission of HCW, to transform the lives of impoverished children. HCW programs impact the lives of over 13,500 people, the programs include: The Child Rescue Centre (CRC), Mercy Hospital and Connections for Hope.
The CRC's is a national model for caring for at-risk children that opened in 2000 to care for street children and orphans affected by Sierra Leone’s civil war. The CRC provides a continuum of care, including Residential, Child Support Program, Foster Care, and Post-Secondary scholarship programs in Bo, Sierra Leone. The CRC is a safe place and a source of hope for nearly 300 children & youth, ranging in age from five to twenty two years old. The CRC makes a difference in the lives of children in desperate situations, allowing them to have a childhood and go to school instead of going to work. The CRC Residential Program provides children with family style living, nutritious meals, healthcare, education, and one-on-one and group counseling. The CRC Child Support Program provides children in the community with healthcare, as well as educational expenses for primary and secondary school for children in the Bo District. The CRC Foster Care Program has placed homeless children into loving homes, providing free healthcare and education for these children. The CRC Post-Secondary Education Program supports youth pursuing university level and vocational training programs. The CRC is turning a needy child into a future leader, giving them the tools they need to help pull their country out of poverty.
Mercy Hospital is a 26 bed primary care hospital in Bo, Sierra Leone, with a trained and dedicated medical staff, a research laboratory, and a fully stocked pharmacy supplied with pure, reliable medications, providing care to over 10,000 a year, regardless of ability to pay. Mercy Hospital is a vital component to the community, providing emergency care, inpatient and outpatient care, and blood transfusions at the hospital, while at the same time providing community educational programs for HIV/AIDS, malaria, prenatal care, and nutrition, taking the services of Mercy out into the villages to thousands of people every year. Mercy Hospital prevents mother to child transmission of HIV and AIDS, decreased the prevalence of malaria in a community by over 40%, and was able to achieve a measurable decrease in the infant and maternal mortality rates in Bo, Sierra Leone by providing holistic, community focused care, regardless of ability to pay. Mercy Hospital is making a difference in the lives of the people of Sierra Leone
HCW's collaborative nonprofit center is Connections for Hope located in Herndon, VA that served over 3,300 in 2011. Connections for Hope's mission and long term impact on the community is to address the needs of low-income neighbors, fostering self - sufficiency, good health, education, safety and full participation in community life in the Reston/Herndon/Chantilly area. The strength of Connections for Hope is the collaborative model and co-location. The ability to work cooperatively and synergistically with a range of other services enables each organization to deliver its programs more efficiently and effectively and provides easier access for the clients. By spreading operating expenses among several organizations, each non-profit can take advantage of the economics of resource sharing. Both clients and organizations benefit from having multiple services housed in one place.
Connections for Hope partner organizations provide services that support the stability and self-sufficiency of families and individuals. Connections for Hope partnering organizations currently consist of Reston Interfaith: homelessness prevention and foreclosure prevention; Literacy Council of Northern Virginia: ESOL training; Vecinos Unidos Neighbors United: homework assistance; Just Neighbors: immigration legal services; Fairfax - Falls Church Community Services Board: mental health, substance abuse and prevention referrals; Jeanie Schmidt Free Clinic: healthcare to low-income children and uninsured adults; and NOVA Scripts Central, a prescription drug service for low-income individuals.
The Child Rescue Centre increased the number of children supported by the program by 11% in 2011. The CRC also had 24 youth in post-secondary education programs in fields such as medicine, engineering, information technology, journalism, education, and the arts. Increasing the number of children the CRC impacts and the number of students gettting post-secondary education has a tremendous affect on Sierra Leone. In Sierra Leone 80% of the population do not have the equivalent of a high school degree.
Mercy Hospital saw a 28% increase in patients admitted in 2011 over 2010, with a 57% increase for maternity patients and a 29% increase of children. There were 116 babies delivered at Mercy in 2011, a 58% increase in one year. there were 8,410 outpatients treated at Mercy, an 18% increase from last year. 240 people attended workshops to learn about HIV & AIDS, and 514 patients were given HIV counseling, testing, and treatment through the Mercy Hospital HIV/AIDS Program.
Connections for Hope partner organizations developed an assessment tool to track outcomes: referrals, number of clients served and number of visits. Referrals are the number of clients that receive service from multiple organizations, in 2011 there were 116 household referrals with 255 individual referrals. The total number of household clients served (unduplicated) in 3,300 in 2011 compared to 2,100 in 2010. The total number of client visits was more than 7,500 in 2011 compared to more than 6,000 in 2010.