2022 has been a year of growth, learning, and a sharpened vision for MJF’s Global Programmes. We are more committed than ever as we seek to contribute to the global movement to work towards a world where family-based alternative care allows children to grow up in safe and loving families, making orphanages unnecessary.
Collaboration is pivotal to seeing this become a reality. This is why we support and invest in partner organisations working to develop systems that better support children through family strengthening, kinship care and foster care programmes.
In 2022, we partnered with nine organisations, supporting more than 350 families in India, Thailand, Indonesia, Uganda, Madagascar, Nepal, Greece and Turkey.
Here are some highlights from throughout the year in our work with partners.
Alternative Care Thailand (ACT)
ACT is a group of NGOs and consultants committed to seeing all children in Thailand growing up in safe and nurturing families. MJF funds their quarterly coordination meetings and this year they were able to hold their first in-person meeting since Covid, which was very helpful for the group. In 2022, MJF also contributed funds towards an ACT research project to document all the childcare institutions in one province in Thailand.
Better Care Network
MJF was requested to co-convene the Global Collaborative Platform Task Force on Foster Care and a spotlight series of webinars on Foster Care Practice, which will contribute to developing a thematic brief on foster care. This project brought together dozens of organisations and practitioners from around the world who are all involved with supporting children and families to present examples of their work and discuss successes, and challenges and identify commonalities. All webinar recordings are available here.
Child’s i Foundation:
Through our partnership, we continue demonstrating community-led alternatives to orphanages in Uganda. We are working to create and strengthen a professional foster care and kinship care community that will work with the Government to review and approve the National Foster Care guidelines. Over 200 prospective carers have begun the assessment process with 25 foster carers now trained in foster care and approved by children’s rights and child protection in Wakiso District.
We continued to support Eurochild’s thematic working group on children in alternative care which comprises 60 organisations across 27 European countries. We also funded a project that provided tailored technical support training and sub-granting to Roots Research Center in Greece and Hayat Sende in Turkey. Among other achievements, during 2022 these organisations helped prospective carers understand the needs of children in alternative care in Turkey and helped parents and professionals to better understand the needs of children in alternative care in Greece.
We have continued to support FAM with family strengthening work and they’ve made substantial progress in creating resources to enable the initiation of foster care, including the development of a handbook on how to implement the national legislation on foster care. MJF’s International Programme Manager recently spent two weeks with the team in Madagascar and was part of several key meetings with the government as the country moves closer to formalising foster care and implementing gatekeeping mechanisms.
Harum Family Centre
By offering a mix of funding and technical support to Harum, they have continued to pilot the government’s new foster care program, advocate with local authorities and communities and provide direct support to 16 families.
One Sky Foundation
We continued to support One Sky to implement a pilot kinship care project along the Thai-Myanmar border district of Sangkhlaburi. Over the past year, this has included work on family strengthening to prevent unnecessary family separation and children entering orphanages.
Through our partnership, we are focusing on family strengthening, restoration and the reintegration of children back into their families in Delhi from institutional care during Covid lockdowns. Over the last year, Udayan Care has welcomed five care leavers to their team as trainees, interns, and social workers. They have prioritised this to ensure their work, programmes, and support for young people and families are informed, guided, and led by people with lived experience of care.
We supported a research project led by Dr Justin Rogers, Social Work Academic at The Open University, as the principle investigator. The project, Sharing Their Narratives, explores children’s and families’ experiences of alternative care in Thailand. The research was completed in 2021 and the final report was launched this year and is available to read here.
Join the global movement to end the era of orphanages
We are grateful to our partners, supporters, and affiliated organisations who join with us as we work toward a world where every child grows up in a safe and loving family. We’d love for you to join us.