Road to the Brydges Centre
Children are brought to the Brydges Centre in a number of different ways. One way is by the chiefs of local Kenyan communities and another is through the local police. An evaluation is administered to determine the child's vulnerability since most children who live in the slums live in small homes made of iron sheets. Usually a family living in these small homes have one room used for many purposes by the whole family and the sanitation is poor. There must be other compelling indications for a child to be considered “vulnerable” then their living environment. Generally children who are total orphans, who have an ill/HIV+ parent and/or are abused or neglected are often the considered the most vulnerable. The ultimate question when determining if a child may have outreach assistance is what the individual child needs, and if the situation that the child is in can be significantly improved by what the outreach program can offer.
The age limit for children to be enrolled in the program is less than 20 years. Previously the age limit was 18 years but this was changed when it was found that many children are delayed in school by one or two years and they complete secondary school later than the usual age.
Intake for the skills training centres is done annually and 20 vulnerable girls are selected to under take a one year’s training course after which they are integrated back to their communities. We are presently working towards implementing a similar program in the Western province home of Brydges for male youth.