Fondation pour L`Enfance-Terre de Paix Director’s report for year 2019

A. The institution

1. Actions and measures

a. The managing committee

Achievements : overall good functioning with keen interest of core members
Challenges : a few members have not been able to attend regularly.
Remedial actions : sensitisation for new members to join in.

b. Advisory committee.
Achievements: quantitative and qualitative participation of staff members have improved;
new working method has facilitated participation; topics harnessed related to code of ethics
and it links up with the convention on the rights of the child, parenting, indigenous language,
team building outing was organised; the annual family evening fund raising event as well as
the bingo party and the ‘korbey menazer’ were organised.
Challenges: participation from members of the managing committee was minimal; time was
lacking for in-depth discussion; implementation has not always been easy; bad weather as not
allowed the holding of other team building activities and the end of year party.
Remedial actions: further motivate committee members; look for means to keep discussion
alive at the the level of units; look for external resource persons for intervention.

c. Information / Communication (Website/ blog/socialmedia, tradional media)
Achievements: the use of social media such as FB, Instagram, whatsaap group advisory
worked out well; 170 articles have been posted on the blog; we intervened in the press in
connection with the children ‘s bill as regards the minimum age for criminal responsibility,
marriage and the restricted possibility for civil society participation in view of a viable
partnership with the state.
Challenge: our website has not evolved much. Staff participation has not been optimum on
social media and in writing articles; minimal participation from members of the association.
Remedial action: increase sensitisation of staff and members of the association on the need
to make use of social media and writing articles.

B. Skilled staffing / Capacity development
Achievement: the introduction to the code of ethics went on well; we have been good at
recruiting some personnel who have fared well during their first year; other newly recruited
staff are promising as well; minimum salary has been introduced with adjustment as required
for an additional cost of Rs 22,680 monthly; there will be a need to contribute to the
portable gratuity fund (4.5%) for employee not enlisted in the SICOM pension plan; the
supervision program for staff has worked out well except for the residential sector;
Training and follow-up of training: the traning centre delivered well in relation with its MQA
approved programs – ECD, Learn through play, Special education needs (2
nd batch ECD and
SEN completed); no new batch was enlisted for psychoanalytical thinking and art therapy as
Dr Kavi was not in Mauritius; we had the opportunity conduct courses in ECD for Attitude
hotels and with Shyam, for the commission in charge of children in Rodrigues; we delivered a
training course for NGOs under the aegis of Fondation CIEL on ‘analyses des pratiques’; we
welcomed Jean Marie and Eliane Bezard for training on the issues of violence and parenting;
other programs were conducted on creole language, active methods to teach children with
the contribution of Armen, a resource person from USA, computer use by Malcolm.
Challenge: A number of staff, a few with good work experience, have left; we have been
struggling to have committed persons for work opportunities offered (high turnover of 22
persons); no one could be found to serve at higher administrative level; the personnel at the
residential sector showed resistence for supervision sessions.
Training in alternative care has been quite hectic as many staff have left and we have had to
restart the program each time with the new comers; despite training, the challenge has been
to transfer into practice what has been acquired. This has to do much more with ownership
and emotional issues than the technical part of it.
Remedial action: follow-up action: closer monitoring of program; enforce implementation
through reminding staff about their obligation as regards work contract and the code of
ethics; persue with the development of training for trainees outside of Terre de Paix;
rethinking as regards the impact minimum wage is having on people’s interest to join us with
our actual salary proposals.

C. Partnering with the State
1. Ministry of Gender
Achievement: 53 children were in our system. The year ended with 41. 10 children left for
reunification out of which 2 absconded but have reached their majority. New admissions
accounted for 6; we have continued to be present on mentoring committee of the ministry.
Challenge: It has to do with (i) the decision of the ministry to enact regulations which would
push more towards institutionalisation of services contrary to what the UN guidelines on
alternative care recommends since 2010. The ministry does not appear to be receptive to our
contention and has even openly question our foster family concept, (ii) their will to have total
control over admission at our structures even without our prior consent as is the case
presently, (iii) the way they are dealing with biological relatives of children whereby our role
has been reduced to a bare minimum.
Contemplated remedial action: design another form of advocacy to influence their decision;
phase out the actual program and set up an informal system whereby children would be
admitted with parental consent; work out another version of the boarding school.

2. Ministry of Social Security
Achievement : The NEF falls now under its purview. The ‘creche voucher’ program has been in
action.
Challenge : The SRM is now under their responsibility and it has been a real challenge to
work with them. The creche voucher system has become more complicated with the advent
of basic minimum wage whereby the revenue criteria for eligibility no longer makes sense.
As far as the NGO trust fund is concerned, it has been transferred to the NSIF without any
communication as to its new way of functioning.
Contemplated remedial action : advocacy for the modification of the eligibility criteria for
families to re-enter the program.

3. Ministry of Education
Achievement : The Special Education Needs Authority is in place ; the first
documents released did not take into consideration the socio- economic vulnerability criteria
to define special education needs. We did intervene to highlight this flaw in the law; no
significant change has been noted at the level of the preschool authority except that they
have been resorting to our Albion structure for particiption in cultural programs..
Challenge: SEN: no meaningful consultation has been on since the passing of the law and the
director of the SENA has not yet been recruited. ECCEA: there has not been any significant
initiative at pedagogical level. The criteria for enlistment of teachers has been upgraded to
Teacher’s certificate now.
Contemplated remedial action: continue with advocacy.

4. NSIF Foundation
A new formula has been developed as regard funding and will be more workable for us if
implemented. In this regard, there will be no need to apply for funds for the same projects
every year. The new program has indeed started to be implemented.with this formula we are
expected to benefit from a sum of Rs 22,350,891.85 for year 2020.

D. Infrastructure /repair /maintenance / equipment
Achievement : Main centre: the long awaited waterproofing and photovoltaic project has
been realised. We are now on the CEB grid. This has been made possible through a loan from
SBM to the tune of rs 560,000/. The missing part (rs 140,000) will be met through payment
to Reneworld on the basis that we will not be paying for CEB bills; Prison : general painting of
the building has been possible thanks to the sponsorship of Rotary Club. The MOU with the
prisons authority has also been renewed for 2 additional years.
Challenge: Main centre: we are still crammed with the school, the youth home, the training
centre and the administration competing for space ; prison : we tried hard to enlist
collaboration with the prison’s staff ; the jardin d’éveil :the residential camp project was
delayed as a result of lack of interested contractors to undertake this type of work ; the
residences : we have been struggling with the issue of bed bug at some residences.
Contemplated remedial action : to resume exploring the possibility of finding an alternative
site for the ADS with the idea of an educational farm ; prison :look for other means to
improve the relationship ; jardin d’eveil : look for other contractors ; residences : raise the
level of cleanliness and hygiene and look for specialised advice and intervention.

E. Services
General
1. Psycho-socio-pedagogical follow-up
i) The working mechanism and functioning :
The methods in place such as weekly meetings, designation of daily responsible person, daily
risk assessment and management, management committee, pedagogical management of the
jardin d’eveil, follow-up in the community in all sectors have worked out well. Weekly meeting
with newly recruited staff have been on for better follow-up.
ii) Theme and programs:

a. the general theme for year 2019 was indigenous languages in line with the UN resolution.
This has been an opportunity to address the pedagogical issue of mother tongue through a
world perspective.

b. The book outreach project at Mirabelles Flacq has fared well. The use of the audio
means has been an add-on to the digital library section.

c. The mechanism to work with parents has been reinforced with the concept of parenthood.
Parents’ meetings have worked out better.

d. The backyard gardening project aimed at food security has reached out for 140
beneficiaries. Year 2019 started with 123 beneficiaries. There has been 7 drop outs and 10
new beneficiaries. 25 families participated in the best garden contest.

e. The individual psychotherapy program was well on.
2. Foster care and youth home
The system has been subject to much stress and strain in 2019. 53 children were taken care
of. We ended the year with 41 children with 6 new admissions. 10 children left for
reunification purposes. 2 children absconded but have reached their majority by now.

ii) We have had to deal with difficult situations with 3 newly enlisted foster families that
were unable to cope with the tasks entrusted to them and were thus discharged from this
responsibility. Alternative solutions have been put in place and are working satisfactorily.

3. Atelier du Savoir (special needs school)
a. The school
Roll : 74 children started school and we ended with 65.
general situation and functioning: the school has been a hectic place to manage relating to
behaviour of children on the one hand and the decreased capacity of the personnel to
show more commitment to work. Throughout the year, special sessions have been
organised to review program, methods and attitude, particularly through self-evaluation
exercises at the end of each term.
Specific programs: the ecole de sport of Club Med was well on and the Jardin d’eveil was
put to better contribution alongdside with pedagogical outings.
Further training program and placement: the 16+ program was well on.
Work with parent : better results have been obtained this year despite the fact that this
aspect of our work has remained difficult.

b. Outreach services linking the school with parents :
These services have continued to keep the link between parents and the school in connection
with admission, follow-up behaviour, placement in employment, home visit and parents’
meeting. The backyard gardening and the needy persons’ projects are taken care of as well
by this service.
Children in the community: This program was well on at Camp Levieux and Albion. The one in
Bambous started well but has decreased in intensity.

4. The early childhood centres
The general situation : our 5 centres have been up to the challenges in relation to
attendance of children, pedagogical practice, security, hygiene and cleanliness and work
with parents in the community. Follow-up with individual families in most difficult
situations was also on all through.
New project : The preschool unit at Grand Bay was launched and work has started in view
of the setting up of a nursery facility in Tamarin in collabortion with the Antoine Tsia Lip
Ken Foundation.
Work with parents : regular meetings and outings were organised and included a training
component as well.
Pedagogical practice : innovative activities was a common feature of the centres. The
jardin d’eveil has been put to contribution by all. Grand Bay, Albion, La Valette and Kids r
kids have had the opportunity of using the facility at Clud Med of Pointe aux Cannoniers.
Community programs : In Albion, an infrastructure has been renovated and transformed
into an arts and craft facility for women while being used by children in our primary
school follow-up program. In La Valette as well, the arts and craft program has continued
with 2-3 beneficiaries.
The ante-natal program : it has functional at all units
Primary school follow-up program : this program was on in Albion, La Valette and Grand
Bay. The whole program was revisited and adjustments made.
follow-up at preschool and primary school : In place with no preschool, follow-up of
children who were at our nursery facilities was on. The program was extended to those
having reached the primary school as well.
Food security program : the hen laying project with ten families in Albion was renewed.
Families were in the backyard farming project while the best garden contest was
organised once more with trainng program for those in the model farming program.
Needy person program : around 30 families mainly from Albion have continued to benefit
from this micro project which allows them some food provisions every month.

5. The Senses Park – Le Jardin d’eveil
Routine functioning : it has continued to welcome visitors with 3067 attendees compared
to 2946 in 2018.
Involvement of other units of TDP : this mechanism of functioning has proved useful and
has been effective in involving the other units in providing better senses stimulation of
their children.
Other visitors : this program has not worked well and will be on the agenda in 2020.
Residential camp project : this project has suffered delay and is to be completed in 2020.

6. Networking
At national level : collaboration with organisations such as MAA (food security and
backyard farming), FAREI (agriculture club ADS and mushroom program); through the
ECD training program in Rodrigues, we opened up an opportunity for further collaboration
in other fields pertaining to child care; the training on analysing practices was very much
appreciated by the organiser and the participants; our partnership with ATLKF was
further developped with now yet another project in Tamarin.
At international level: NGOs and State organisations were mobilized on the issue of
violence and parenthood with the hosting of a conference with the support of Fondation
Club Med

F. Foreign Student Placement
The trainng aspect : Students from Denmark and Switzerland have continued with
placement programs alongside with other foreign university students from Ralco company.
This activity has allowed us to place our services under scrutiny for highlights of
weaknesses. Requests have had to be turned down for lack of welcoming capacity on our
side.
The ecomonic aspect: this activity has proved to be an interesting source of revenue with
revenue reaching Rs 281,566 for 2019.

G. Finance and sponsorship
Our budget : Total revenue amounted to Rs 29,389,909/ and expenses to Rs 28,890,358/
compared to Rs25,094,296/ in 2018.
Our strategy : The action toward the NSIF worked out well and a more acceptable
formula has been devised and put in place to fund long term ongoing projects like ours,
shielding us from uncertainties to a large extent.

State : State contribution has focused on NSIF except for special education needs
school which will be managed by the SENA.
Other Foundations : We could still benefit from Fondation Club Med and the Antoine Tsia
Lip Ken Foundation.

Private sector : large companies such as SBM and HSBC have continued to provide
support.

Own fund raising initiative : Staff initiatives such as ‘sware familial’ and ‘korbey menazer’
have added to management of ATLKF programs and revenues from foreign university
placement of students.

Conclusion
Out of our three main services, our early childhood service has been the one which has
worked out with the minimal of issues. There is less of uncertainty as regards the special
needs education school following the enactment of the SENA, despite the fact that our
challenge remains at the level of keeping a good children’s attendance and look for more
commitment from the personnel. As for alternative care, we are now at a crossroad as to
the stand of the ministry which clearly woud drive us to more institutionalisation of our
services. We should keep all options open iin line with our core principles.

Alain Muneean
29.03.2020

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