In practice

The program operates in two compounds, referred to as MCRC I and MCRC II.

MCRC I houses 2 women and Monday till Friday, 60 girls and boys. The facilities here include a garden, kindergarten, dining room, recreation room and sleeping quarters.

As the most basic provision for all of the beneficiaries is the food provided to them during their participation in the program, MCRC I also runs a large kitchen.

At MCRC II, there are 5 classrooms for the education of the older children, a large multi-purpose room, which is also used for dance and music therapy, a first aid room, a counseling room, an atelier and for the women / mothers, a tailoring room and a workshop.

All of the children are provided with a structured education program as well as the materials needed to support such a program.

MCRC works together with experienced professionals and teachers to provide tutoring, therapy and counseling. A group of mothers attend classes in basic numeracy and literacy three times a week. Another group attends a more advanced class that aims to enable the women to complete their external school certificates.

A large number of mothers participate in professional training opportunities. Fourteen are currently employed by the MCRC shop: some as shopkeepers and some in preparing the spices and goods that are sold in the shop. All are provided with on-the-job training. Another group attends a tailoring course and already their output is being sold in the shop. Many of the parents participating in the project are also directly employed by MCRC, as teacher assistants, cooks, cleaners, gardeners, guards or laundry staff.

A program of therapy is operated for those who need it. There are three separate dance classes, running three times a week. One is for a group of mothers, another for a group of physically disabled children and the last for a larger group of children. Individual counseling sessions are held regularly for those who have particular and current or urgent needs. Each week, a “community conversation” is held for all the mothers in the program. These sessions aim to collectively support the women with issues they face in their lives, together with providing therapy through group activities. There is also a more practical side to these sessions, as a trained nurse provides basic education in first aid and reproductive health.

Family activities are arranged to help maintain and strengthen familial bonds. Mothers are given guidance in how to better communicate with their children and excursions are organized so that children and parents can play together. In addition, there are parents’ days that feature music, drama and dance performances.

All beneficiaries are given guidance on basic health and hygiene. When sickness does occur, MCRC organizes and funds medical treatment. Several mothers and children are on long-term courses of medication for chronic conditions (such as HIV) and receive a specialized diet to help maintain their health.