Children’s Joy Foundation USA, as a charity non-profit organization, is building its programs and services in partnership with Social Welfare Development Agencies in Asian countries such as the Philippines. Since its inception, it has made significant impact to the lives of poor children in Asia by providing the support they need.
Building Homes for Destitute Children
CJF USA has been supporting efforts of partner social welfare agencies in the Philippines in providing child care residential homes for orphaned, neglected, and dependent poor Filipino children.
The Philippines’ Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) encourages its partner social welfare agencies to provide this kind of assistance to poor Filipino children who are basically homeless for the reason that they are either abandoned or neglected.
In 2011, the Philippines had 29 million children aged 5–18 years old. Of this number, 10.9 million are 5–17 years old who lived in poverty and has either stopped going to school, resorted to forced labor to earn a living, or worse, left by their parents who could no longer afford to provide them with their basic needs.
This scenario is common in the Philippines’ urban areas up to this day. A number of these cases are catered by CJFI (Phil), CJF USA’s partner in the Philippines which provides center-based programs for destitute children who are orphaned, neglected and/or dependent.
DSWD describes a neglected child as one whose parent, parents or guardian failed to exercise a minimum degree of care in supplying the child with adequate food, clothing, shelter, education and medical care due to intense poverty. A dependent child refers to a needy child who has been deprived of parental support or care because of the parents’ or guardian’s death, absence from home, physical and/or mental incapacity, or unemployment.
Child Education Support Program
Thousands of Filipino children and other Asian children have been benefited by this program. CJF USA has been supporting the education of marginal children in Asia to help them achieve their dreams and become active contributing members in their communities.
Extreme poverty is forcing children to stop going to school and to resort to forced labor to help make ends meet. Out of the 29 million Filipino children, 5.4 million are working (18%) primarily to help their families.
CJF USA has been working closely with social welfare agencies in the Philippines for many years to help these Filipino children continue their studies. CJF USA considers education as a very important instrument in propelling a child to become productive in his undertakings as he or she grows up.
Supplemental Feeding and Nutrition Program
CJF USA has been proactively working with church missionaries, volunteers, and social welfare development agencies in implementing supplemental feeding programs to improve the health condition of poor children in Asia, particularly in the Philippines.
Twenty-one (21%) percent of Filipino new births have low birth weight and 19% of children who are 5 years and below are underweight. This shows the prevalence of malnutrition among Filipino children.
In other parts of Asia such as Indonesia, 19% of Indonesian children are underweight while 36% have stunted weight. In Cambodia, 11% of newborn babies have low birth weight, 29% of children are underweight and 40% of them have stunted weight.
Supplemental feeding activities are conducted all throughout the year to address this nutrition problem. In the Philippines, the programs are coordinated with the Department of Social Welfare and Development through CJFI (Phil) based on its standard requirements.
Relief Assistance Program
CJF USA has always been active in disaster relief activities to address the immediate needs of disaster and calamity victims. The ones who are always put at risk when a disaster strikes are the young children who are incapable of survival especially without the help of any adult.
This program addresses the immediate needs of the victims particularly food provisions for the affected children and their families.
Among the most notable relief efforts by CJF USA were the extensive disaster relief operations implemented in the Typhoon Haiyan affected areas and in the province of Bohol which was hit by a 7.2-magnitude earthquake in 2013.
Both of these unfortunate events brought with them destruction that reached catastrophic proportions leaving thousands of Filipino families homeless and children orphaned.