1. Temporary Safe Care Programme (Residential): IMMEDIATE SAFETY AND PROTECTION
We are registered with the Department of Social Services as a Child and Youth Care Centre offering Temporary Safe Care to 24 boys and girls aged between 6 and 18 years. This programme offers immediate relief, care and protection to children in severely compromising situations (physical, sexual and emotional abuse/neglect) whilst at the same time being part of a bigger, more integrated plan with other stakeholders to reduce the amount of children entering the statutory system on a long-stay basis. Such temporary interventions gives apt time to caseworkers to find a more suitable, future solution for the child whilst the child is safe from further harm and in an environment where his/her physical/emotional and developmental needs are met.
Many activities take place within this programme such as nutrition, medical care, provision of clothing and other necessary resources, individual and group therapy, play therapy, education, life-skills, educational and recreational outings, sport and recreation etc.
We apply the Circle of Courage methodology which is used by most child and youth care centres as one of the important development tools for a child. Compliance with the Children’s Act is paramount and is the leading statute in the field of child and youth care.
We also work jointly with caseworkers (external social workers) from social service providers such as Dept. Social Development and ACVV.
The Residential programme is always full to capacity i.e. 24 children at any given time, which is sadly an indication of many children’s need for safety and protection.
A qualified and experienced social worker is appointed who attends to various social work functions such as admissions, placements, individual and group therapy and liaisons with external social worker agencies who refer children to Elkana Childcare. Social work is an integral function contributing towards the best interest of the child. The social worker together with the child and youth care workers form the team that is directly responsible for the child’s care at Elkana Childcare.
2. After School Care Programme: EARLY INTERVENTION AND PREVENTION
We accommodate 100 children in this programme on a daily basis Monday to Friday. Children from Gr. R – Matric have a safe place to do their homework, assignments and studies instead of being alone at home after school (which is the case for 95% of our children). A holistic approach is practised by constantly striving to ensure an environment that is stimulating as well as conducive to learning.
Therefore, in addition to assistance with homework and studies, life-skills, school holiday programmes, music, sport and recreation are also offered as well as provision for basic needs such as food and clothing to the very needy.
The reality that this programme truly reaches the objectives of early intervention and prevention is evidenced in the fact that when we implemented this programme in 2006 to current date, there has only been one child who has dropped out of school. Many very young children have started attending the programme about two years ago. Clearly this displays the confidence and faith that parents have in the programme and we hope that most of them will be with us until they have completed Matric!