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HANCI-SL, Freetown, Sierra Leone
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The mission/purpose of our organisation is the provision of child welfare services through the creation of an enabling environment for the proper up bringing of orphans, abandoned and neglected children in Sierra Leone by empowering them and their families to live together in the love and security of a family.
HANCI mainly focuses its activities on vulnerable children. These vulnerable children fall into many categories. There are those children who live and work in the street all by themselves. This can be due to many reasons. There are those children who are in the streets because they are orphans, some because they have been physically and sexually abused at home and others, because they have been neglected (their basic survival needs cannot be met by their families). Another set of vulnerable children is children of beggars and disabled parents. It is quite obvious that these parents cannot provide for these children and so they are at risk and exposed to various forms of abuses. We also work with teenage girls who are within school going age, but are not in school because they have babies. The rebels used some of these girls as sex slaves and the military during the ten years rebel war in the country. These combatants abused, impregnated and abandoned these girls and their babies. The girls returned to their families, but were also rejected by them because they were tagged as ‚‘rebel wives‚’. As an organization, HANCI has been engaged in community advocacy for these girls, and have been empowering them through education and vocational skills training. The final set of vulnerable children is unaccompanied children who lost contact with their families during the war. HANCI has been making all effort to trace the families of these children, and to find foster placements for them where no relative can be traced. As HANCI has been working with children as its main focus, the parents or families of these children are also targeted indirectly through the provision of livelihood support. This support is meant to strengthen the economic strength of these families so that they could continue supporting the children even after HANCI would have stopped supporting them.
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