Girls from the low social classes are a very vulnerable group in Indian society. Neglect and exploitation always lurk. The Happy Home offers teenage girls a home in every way. On the outskirts of this South Indian metropolis, 25 teenage girls live here, aged 12 to 18, accompanied by two resident sisters as “house parents” and a social worker. In close consultation with the parent(s) we offer the girls a chance for a better future.
Being a child for the first time
Since 2011, the girls’ house offers vulnerable girls from the stone quarries and slums a safe environment. For the first time in their lives they can really be children. In addition to shelter and healthy eating, they receive good education and psychological counseling. There is lot of attention for sports and creative activities such as singing, dance, drama, drawing and yoga.
The “house parents” educate the girls, help them with problems and support them with their homework. Before and after school, the children help with cleaning, cleaning, washing dishes and preparing meals. They also receive information about hygiene and health. This way they gain experience to run a household independently.
All to schoolHappy Home for Girls
Education plays an important role in increasing their chances for a better future. All girls go to good secondary schools. School fees, school uniforms and teaching materials are almost entirely financed, supplemented by a small contribution from the parents to the study costs. To make up for their educational disadvantage, the girls receive intensive homework guidance and additional English and computer lessons. They also receive guidance in their choice for higher education and job orientation.
In recent years, the girls’ school performance has improved enormously. A large number of them have started higher education, as the first generation of their family! Studies range from commerce to flight attendant.
When the girls leave the girls’ house after the age of eighteen, they have a good foundation. However, that is not enough to be able to survive in society. Additional training is needed to develop their talents, to be well prepared for the labor market and to be self-sufficient. For this purpose, Planet Hope has set up the Learning Centre.
An empowerment program has been developed to support the girls in their development towards adulthood. They often suffer from emotional problems, which arose in their early traumatic youth. Through individual guidance and group activities, we work on increasing the girls’ self-confidence and resilience. Major steps have already been taken, but continuous attention remains necessary to teach the girls to stand strong in society.
An important element is the bond of the girls with their parent(s). They are therefore closely involved in the education and school career of their children. The parents come to visit their daughters every other week on Sunday. To “just” spend time with them, but also to talk about the development of their child and about the future of their daughters when it comes to study and work. Parents are also regularly informed about subjects such as education, health and hygiene.
Sponsor a girl
The girls’ house is sponsored by funds and private donations. Planet Hope has developed a sponsorship program to cover the costs structurally. If you want to make a difference for one of the girls, check out how to become a sponsor parent here.
Kids magazine Creation of our Heart Beats
To give the girls a voice, literally and figuratively, their own kids magazine has been created: Creation of our Heart Beats. The children came up with the title, conduct interviews, write articles and take photos and drawings. This way the children learn to express themselves in a creative way, and readers get a good picture of everyday life.