“We believe the family is the best place for every child.” This quote from a social worker narrating the video below is the central theme of the DOVCU program, which is implemented by ChildFund in Uganda and funded by USAID. Parents or family members who struggle through grinding poverty often feel that the best solution is to give their children up to an institution – an orphanage or children’s home – in hopes of a better life for them. The reality is that this often results in children growing up without culture and community and makes them more vulnerable to child trafficking or living on the streets. Furthermore, the standard of living in such institutions is seldom better. The Deinstitutionalization of Orphans and Vulnerable Children in Uganda program seeks to strengthen the livelihoods of families so that breaking apart the family is unnecessary. It also works to bring separated families back together again. I recently shot and produced these three short[…]Read More
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You may have had the unfortunate experience of having your seaside vacation interrupted by a thunderstorm, or worse, a hurricane. Imagine if such a storm were responsible for wiping out not just your vacation, but your family’s income and food supply for the coming year. This, while unthinkable for us in the developed world, is a menacing possibility each year for families in Madagascar, an island nation of 22 million in the Indian Ocean. With 3,000 miles (4800 km) of coastline, it’s hard for Madagascar to avoid being a stop on the itinerary for cyclones sweeping through the Southern Indian Ocean. I recently spent time here with CARE documenting some of their disaster risk reduction programs. A cyclone, as a hurricane is called in the Indian and southern Pacific Oceans, can destroy acres of the rice paddies that produce Madagascar’s staple crop. But what if farmers could harvest their crop[…]Read More