The Philippines is prone to deadly natural disasters
Typhoon Haiyan made landfall in the Philippines on November 8, 2013. It was one of the most powerful storms ever recorded, killing 6,000 people and leaving millions homeless.1
With vivid memories of the havoc wreaked just over a year ago, Typhoon Hagupit struck the Philippines in 2014. While Hagupit roared in from the Pacific as a Category 3 typhoon, it did not prove as deadly as Haiyan.
The two years after Typhoon Hagupit brought with them additional storms. Typhoon Koppu in 2015 and Typhoon Haima in 2016.
Save the Children responded to all four typhoons, supporting the rebuilding of homes and livelihoods of over 1 million people, including 826,000 children.
Super Typhoon Mangkhut could be a category 4 storm
While the slow moving typhoon strengthened to category 5 status on Wednesday, with sustained winds of up to about 180 miles per hour, current modelling has the storm making landfall as a category 4 typhoon on Saturday morning. Super Typhoon Mangkhut looks set to pummel coastal communities in the Filipino island of Luzon, the country’s most populous island and home nation’s capitol of Manila.
In 2016, Typhoon Haima weakened from a category 5 storm to category 4 just before making landfall, tens of thousands of homes and displacing more than 90,000 people in Luzon.
Millions of children are at risk
Heavy rains, flooding and landslides could put million of already vulnerable children at risk.
Save the Children has emergency team deployed to Santiago, Luzon with pre-position relief items positioned across the country, including thousands of household, hygiene and back-to-school kits.
“We are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst, Save the Children Philippines CEO Alberto Muyot said. “Once the storm passes, our team will work with local authorities and other aid agencies to assess the scale of devastation caused by the typhoon and determine what the needs are of those affected.”
Written by Angelica Cadavid | Photograph by Gary Shaye
When I arrived in Puerto Rico, I didn’t know what to expect. Almost a year after Hurricane Maria, I wondered what I would see. Would my mother’s beloved island still show the scars of the devastation that roared upon its shores on September 20, 2017? What about the children?
What I saw was heartbreaking and hopeful at the same time. The physical signs of Hurricane Maria were everywhere. I kept telling my non-Puerto Rico based colleagues that the island didn’t look like this before the storm. Everywhere were the markers of what were once family homes and local businesses, now in ruins. One girl I spoke with told me the hurricane blew the roof off her home. What was equally traumatic for her family was finding the remnants of other people’s lives that the storm had blown into their house, things like shoes and other personal items.
While many of the children and families that I spoke with painted a picture of loss, our conversations also turned hopeful. Communities like Fronton and Mulitas were coming together to support one another, especially the children. An abandoned basketball court is now a beautiful community center. It’s a place where children can play in a safe, protected environment, make up for lost school days, and heal from the trauma of loss and fear caused by the storm. One young boy told me he was afraid and angry after the hurricane but now he feels protected after participating in our Journey of Hope program.
Families told me how much the programs meant to them, but until I saw our community activities in action, I had no idea. I wish every Save the Children supporter could see the joy on the children’s faces. Even those kids that had started the day a bit sullen were soon laughing and playing.
Almost one year after Hurricane Maria, there is still so much need on the island. It took 10 months for the community of Mariana to get electricity. But Puerto Ricans are resilient and with help and the continued dedication of Save the Children staff, local leaders, parents and supporters – Puerto Rico si se levanta (Puerto Rico will rise up).
To learn more about Save the Children’s emergency responses and ongoing recovery work in Puerto Rico, visit our website.
YOUR SUPPORT CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IN NEED. MAKE A DONATION TO THE CHILDREN’S EMERGENCY FUND TODAY!
More than 1 million people in coastal areas of Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina have been ordered to evacuate their homes as Hurricane Florence, anticipated to be a Category 5 storm by the time it makes landfall, continues towards shore.
All along the coast, concerned residents are taking necessary emergency preparedness precautions and springing into action – boarding up their homes, filling their fuel tanks with gas and heading towards safety. However, families with young children need take additional steps around hurricane preparedness, including providing children with understanding and control around the emergency. As the national leader for children in emergencies, Save the Children is here to help.
Talk about Hurricane Florence
Preparing young children for a hurricane emergency can start with letting them know that it’s alright to be afraid in disaster situations. Explain to your child what may happen once Hurricane Florence makes landfall using simple, age-appropriate words. Reassure your children that during Hurricane Florence, many caring adults — including parents, teachers and first responders — will be working to keep them safe.
Identify Evacuation Routes
If you are among the 1 million people ordered to evacuate the coastal areas in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina, reassure your children that you have identified the best evacuation routes and review the route together.
Pack an Emergency Go-To Bag
The process of putting together an emergency go-to bag will help children understand what could happen during and after Hurricane Florence. For example, a flash light and non-perishable food are essential emergency go-to bag items that will come in handy should the power go out. A few favorite toys, medicine and personal hygiene items are also important to have in an emergency go-to bag should your family be away from home for a few days or more.
Make Emergency Contact Cards
Every child in your family should have an emergency contact card that includes three emergency contacts any first responder or caregiver can reach out to, in case your family is separated during the Hurricane Florence. Save the Children has an easy tool that allows families to create an Emergency Contact Card together.
Save the Children is closely monitoring Hurricane Florence and is assembling a team in North Carolina to help children and families bracing for the powerful storm. With your support, our caring professionals are prepared to help vulnerable children during and after the storm.
To learn more about Save the Children’s emergency responses and ongoing recovery work, visit our website.
YOUR SUPPORT CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE. MAKE A DONATION TODAY TO SUPPORT THE HURRICANE FLORENCE CHILDREN’S EMERGENCY RELIEF FUND.
Written by Sandra Anthony, Save the Children Ambassador, Marion County School District, Mississippi
Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much – Helen Keller
For me, “community” is rooted in fellowship with others as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests and goals. One of the most important obligations of a community is to make sure that its children have a chance at a successful future. Protecting vulnerable young members of the community who do not have a voice – from neglect, poverty, abuse and violence – is essential. It is also the community’s responsibility to promote education.
When I became community and kindergarten readiness ambassador for Vroom, an initiative of the Bezos Family Foundation, my eyes were opened to the need for more educational development in our small, rural community of Foxworth, Mississippi. We did not have the resources for parents to support their children’s learning outside of school and the closest library is 30 miles away. Many families lack transportation. I knew there had to be a way to inform parents how important it is to educate young children at home before entering kindergarten. Yet, for families living in poverty, parents often wake up in survival mode and stressed about whether they can pay the electric bill or stretch the food supply. As a result, I found that many parents were forgetting to take an active part in the education of their children.
The arrival of Vroom transformed our community.
With the help of Vroom tips, I was able to connect with local businesses and churches in the community and demonstrate how they could support early child education. To reach a broader area, I set up a social media Vroom page highlighting how easy it is to incorporate Vroom into everyday activities. I literally saw the community begin to light up! I began to receive feedback from parents on how they incorporated Vroom into small daily tasks like cleaning, bathing and riding in a car. Understanding the need for these resources, stores allowed me to put up posters and flyers. I created Vroom placemats for restaurants to pass out to families waiting for their meals so they were able to have a literacy experience together. Three churches allowed me to come speak about Vroom. During these events, I would have Vroom pamphlets, posters, tip cards, shirts, keychains and books to distribute. At the community’s fall festival event, children were able to pick pumpkins with tips attached to them. As the word spread, people would actually stop me as I walked down the street or call and say that they had seen my posters and wanted to know more about the five basics of Vroom (Look, Chat, Follow, Stretch, and Take Turns).
It was during these conversations that I met Katheryn Lowery and her daughter, Abby Raye (at left). Mrs. Lowery stated that she was 36 when she found out she was expecting. She was not familiar with Vroom techniques and did not believe she had the skills to teach her daughter. What an opportunity, to share with her that she already had what it takes to be a brain builder. Now when I see her, Katheryn tells me how much she loves Vroom tips and how she is better equipped as a parent to support and identify appropriate development milestones for Abby Raye.
Enthusiasm for Vroom throughout the community has continued to grow, and local leaders, businesses and churches have become Vroom partners. At a local collaborative meeting, I gave community leaders the opportunity to try Vroom tips out themselves. Mark Rogers, a local journalist, and Chief Deputy Sheriff Jamie Singley couldn’t hold back their laughter as they practice the “Smile and Wink” activity. By taking part in actual Vroom activities, community leaders experienced the actual effect of the Vroom tips versus just listening to the benefits that they offer. After the meeting, these leaders went out and continued to spread the word about the importance of early learning for children.
Vroom has strengthened our community in many ways. Law enforcement personnel share Vroom tips and books with children during security checkpoints. Medical clinics display Vroom posters and books in waiting rooms and the local custard stand gives out information at their drive-through window. Child protective services has mandated that parents who have had their children taken away attend the Vroom Play & Learn groups to increase their knowledge of early literacy to help them regain custody of their children. The local newspaper publishes articles highlighting the importance of Vroom for early development and local radio station invited me on air to emphasize the benefits of Vroom.
Without the support of community and the Vroom initiative, it would have been impossible for me to reach out to the families in Marion County and share strategies to help children learn early. However, with community support, the children entering kindergarten this year in Marion County are much better prepared for success. Helen Keller was right; alone we can do so little, together we can do so much more.
To learn more about how Vroom is innovating Save the Children’s Early Steps to School Success program, visit our website.
By Agus, Edited by Suciati Bobu
Sponsorship Operations Staff
Save the Children in Indonesia
September 6, 2018
On February 13th, 2017, I was spending time with my friends playing around our home, when my teacher came to visit. As I approached wondering what news the teacher had brought in to my parents, I was called, “Agus, please come in! I’ve got something to tell you!” The teacher waved me to come closer, “You know what, you are going to have your sponsor visit you soon,” she told me. “Your parents are okay with the visit. What do you think?”
I thought, “Wow, there is a foreigner coming to visit me! Is it true? Is there someone who wants to come a long way to visit me in my village?”
I live in a small farming village in the mountains on an island, where it is very rare to receive visits from outsiders, even from the little town here. Expecting a foreigner to visit me was beyond my imagination. As a school ambassador of Save the Children, I have a sponsor in Korea whose name is Mr. Choi. We write to each other through letters. Is this Korean man sure he would like to come to see me? Questions boomed in my head.
“Yes!” I gave my short answer with a big nod. It was a ‘yes’ with a mix of wonder, many questions and of course, excitement.
Time flew by and it came the day of the visit, the 5th of May, 2017. My parents came along to school to meet Mr. Choi and his family. I was excited about meeting them. “What will they look like?” I saw a group of people stepping out of the car. I could see four beautiful people who looked different from the others. They were Mr. Choi, his wife, and their son and daughter – Wonho who was 5 and little Yunji who was just 3. The other two were Save the Children staff who helped facilitate the meeting. “They are here, it’s unbelievable!” I thought to myself.
When it came to the introduction part, I was so nervous. I did not know what to say to Mr. Choi and his family. I had no clue how to speak Korean, even English. Luckily, the people from Save the Children helped me. It was surprising to know that Mr. Choi still remembered my dream of becoming a pilot. I recalled that I once mentioned it when I wrote a letter to him. He knew and remembered that about me, and much more through the letters I sent. He told me how keen they were to visit me. I felt so special.
We then walked together to see the other students. As Mr. Choi is a dentist, he brought hundreds of toothbrushes. We shared them with the other students at school. In class, we learn about how to have good personal hygiene and nutrition, and learn about how and when to brush our teeth, too. Just like Mr. Choi does at his job!
Before leaving, Mr. Choi came to me and said, “I’ll try to come back. Please study hard to reach your dream. Go to school every day and obey your parents!” It was just a few of hours meeting, but seeing them leaving was heart breaking. Yet, I know that we would still communicate through letters. Most of all, I am now confident in studying even harder in order to pursue my dream.
I know that I have my other family in another part of the world who always supports me.
Have you written to your sponsored child lately? A quick note with a few words of encouragement can make a world of difference for a struggling child. Consider sharing a message with them today!
Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.
Across the world, millions of children leave school without learning to properly read and write. Angelita, age 9, was at risk of becoming one such child. Although she was enrolled in a primary school in her rural Indonesian village, Angelita was a struggling student.
If a young child gap struggles with reading, they risk falling behind and may never catch up. In fact, if children don’t get the help they need to learn to read, then the gaps between struggling and strong readers widens and worsen as they grow.
As a young girl growing up in a place that grapples with widespread poverty and political instability, Angelita is one of 575 million girls who live in countries characterized by discrimination against girls.1 As reported in Save the Children’s 2018 End of Childhood Report, girls are more likely than boys to never set foot in a classroom. At last estimate, some 15 million girls of primary school age would never get the chance to learn to read or write in primary school. And for those girls who are enrolled in school, the opportunity to develop as a reader is not guaranteed. In fact, only 94% of girls 15 and older are literate.
Save the Children has worked in Indonesia for more than three decades. Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors, enrollment for girls in sponsorship schools rose by nearly 5% over 2015.
With your support, we are working to give children in Indonesia and around the world early learning opportunities at home and in school.
For just over a year now, 9-year-old Angelita has been taking part in a Save the Children ‘reading camp’ – a vital afterschool program that boosts the literacy of 7 through 9-year-olds and gives them the skills to succeed, even when learning in overburdened school systems.
“Personally, I think children here lacked many things before Save the Children came,” says Angelita’s mother Maria. “Now, we can see our children have had significant improvements in their education. They’re more keen on going to school.”
To learn more about Save the Children’s work to support child literacy around the world, visit our website.
YOUR SUPPORT CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IN NEED. MAKE A DONATION TODAY!
Literacy opens the door to a brighter future. A child’s early years are critical in shaping their development and lifelong learning potential. However, if a young child struggles with reading, they risk falling behind and may never catch up. In fact, if children don’t get the help they need to learn to read, then the gaps between struggling and strong readers widen and worsen as they grow.
Poet and author Emilie Buchwald wrote, “Children are made readers on the laps of their parents.” But for children living in poverty, and those with few books or no one to read to them at home, the chance to become a lifelong reader may seem out of reach. In fact, children in poverty are less likely to attend preschool and often live in households where early learning activities are few and far between.
That’s why Save the Children’s education experts support children, parents, caregivers and schools to develop literacy skills from birth. There are many things you can do to support child literacy as well, and ways you can get the children in your life reading and succeeding, as a result.
Statistics about Reading and Success
According to the Department of Education, the more students read or are read to for fun on their own time and at home, the higher their reading scores, generally.1 However, in the United States, more than 60% of low-income families have no children’s books in their home.2
In many rural communities where Save the Children works, the school library is the only place where children can access books. When children don’t have access to books or have family members regularly read aloud to them, their reading scores dive far below the national average. By the time they’re 3 years old, children from low-income families have been exposed to 30 million fewer words than their more affluent counterparts.3 Reading and being read aloud to has an impact that extends beyond just hearing stories.
When children are read to at home, they are able to count to 20 or higher, write their own names, and over 1 out of 4 of those children are able to recognize all members of the alphabet.4 Children who read at home also score higher in math.
What is the best way to teach a child to read?
The first step on the path to literacy is teaching children letters and the sounds they make. You can read along with a child to help them identify and sound-out the different noises in a word. As children take these precious first steps towards literacy, parents should gradually expand their selection of reading material to help children learn new words.
Children need to learn to read accurately and with understanding. The best way to teach a child to do that is to ask them questions and encourage them to think carefully about the words. As anyone who has learned a second language can tell you, learning these skills once is not enough. Children need to develop fluency, which only comes from practice.
How can I improve my child’s reading skills?
Nearly every parent has asked themselves, “How do I help my child read at home?” Let’s reframe that question. Instead, think of how you can make reading more enjoyable for your child.
It can be a big mistake to turn reading into a power struggle, or to unintentionally train children to see reading as something done just for a reward instead of for enjoyment. Kids like to read when it’s fun and when it’s relevant to their interests.
Parents will notice their children are full of questions. If your child shows curiosity about a specific topic, visit the library or bookstore and get them a book on the subject. If they have a favorite TV or movie character, see if there are a line of books that continue that character’s adventures on the printed page. In addition to wanting to read more, your child will also expand his or her imagination.
At what age should a child be able to read?
Although every child is different, most children are able to read between the ages of 4 and 7. Some children start learning to read and write their letters, or recognize signs and symbols as early as 3 years old. Gradually, their reading proficiency grows and they start to ask questions about words they can’t sound out or do not understand. While some children are slower to develop reading skills, most should be able to read with fluency by the time they’re 7 years old.
However, children who do not develop literacy skills early-on can face serious disadvantages in the classroom. When a child’s reading skills are not in-step with the timetable for their school, those children fall behind. Poor reading skills may not only affect their grades, but also take a toll on their confidence or create educational problems in other areas.
How can I help my Dyslexic child learn to read?
Dyslexia is a disorder that affects children of all ages and learning levels — even children with above average intelligence. Dyslexia is a learning disorder that affects the way the brain processes information. For children with dyslexia, certain parts of their brains process words on a page differently than most people, which makes reading much harder for them. Dyslexia is typically diagnosed during pre-school or elementary school years.
Dyslexia can be overcome. Kids with dyslexia can work with a teacher, tutor, specialist, or their parents to improve their reading. In particular, dyslexic children need extra help memorizing sight words. Parents can help by trying to engage all of their child’s senses when learning something new. For example, if a child is struggling to remember a letter, encourage them to use their finger to trace-out the shape of the letter.
Repetition is also important to helping dyslexic children overcome their challenges. Similarly, talking about what they read and/or heard can help them better understand what they’ve read and increase comprehension skills.
Helping Children in Need
“Here’s the good news,” stated Save the Children Trustee Jennifer Garner when testifying on Capitol Hill about the importance of early childhood education in March 2017. “It takes so little – a ball, a book, a parent who is given the encouragement to read or talk or sing to a child – to make a life-changing difference.”
Supporting Save the Children’s literacy programs ensures that children in the U.S. and around the world will be introduced to reading and writing at a young age, and that they will be given the opportunity to reach their full potential.
To learn more about the work Save the Children has done to support child literacy and help set children up for success, visit our website.
YOUR SUPPORT CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IN NEED. MAKE A DONATION TODAY!
3. Hart, Betty and Todd R. Risley. “The Early Catastrophe: The 30 Million Word Gap by Age 3.” American Educator, Spring 2003. 6 Isaacs, Julia B. and Katherine Magnuson. ↩
Giving is now as easy as saying “Alexa, donate to Save the Children.” We know our supporters like you have busy lives. Now with Alexa and Amazon Pay, it’s even quicker and easier for you to make a difference for kids in need.
Thanks to our donors’ generosity, Save the Children has a long history of innovation in our work helping the world’s most vulnerable girls and boys. This pioneering spirit also inspires us to look for ways we can be more efficient and effective. Because of this, we’re thrilled to offer donors an easy way to help children through Amazon Alexa. As voice technology becomes more and more popular, we want to make sure it’s as easy as possible for our supporters to help children around the world.
“With Alexa voice donations, you can literally use your voice to help even more children in need by donating to Save the Children,” stated Ettore Rossetti, Sr. Advisor of Social Strategy & Digital Innovation.
This isn’t the first time we were first-movers in new ways for charitable giving. As an early adopter of PayPal, Bitcoin, G2A Pay Wallet, YouTube donate cards, Facebook donate buttons, Apple Pay and Venmo, we continue to look provide a variety of secure and easy ways you can give to our mission.
When you make a donation on Alexa by using Amazon Pay, the information already stored in your Amazon account is used. No fumbling with credit card numbers or filling our long forms. And, you’ll have peace of mind knowing your payment information remains safe and secure.
To donate to Save the Children using Amazon Pay, visit: https://files.savethechildren.org/amazon-pay/
Annette Malilo Konsolo
Information and Communications Officer
Save the Children in Zambia
August 27, 2018
The atmosphere at one of our local primary schools was special this day, as it was hosting an important day in the lives of many children. With the Zambian flag flying high, teachers struggled to keep children together as there was so much to see. Younger students could be seen peeping through the classroom windows, trying to catch a glimpse of the older boys moving around outside the school, carrying drums over their shoulders while the girls set-up decorations in the school hall. They just couldn’t wait to dance to the rhythm of those big drums.
International Day of the African Child has been celebrated on June 16th every year since 1991, after it was initiated by the OAU, the Organization of African Unity. It honors those who participated in the Soweto Uprising on that day in 1976. In the Soweto Uprising, black South African students led protests against the discriminatory policies of the Apartheid government. The event is historically significant for the extreme police brutality the students faced, and its role in bringing international attention to the cruel realities faced by black South Africans. The Day of the African Child brings with it an important aspect in the lives of African children and those of different nationalities across the world alike.
Charity, the headteacher at the school, together with other members of her school staff, took their places as everyone joined them for the national anthem. Afterwards, Charity and Save the Children staff spoke to the crowd on the day’s activities. The atmosphere was filled with pride, as Zambia has enjoyed 52 years of peace. Looking around the crowd, one could also see the pride that came along with being an African child, as children eagerly listened in.
Standing beside her mother, 8-year-old Sara struggled to sing the anthem to perfection but still understood the meaning of the song and the words to it. Probably one day when she’s a bit older, its words will mean even more to her.
“She’s so anxious to learn new things and never stops asking me questions. Being a Caregiver myself, I have no problem as I teach younger children so I understand her,” says Sara’s mother, Phales, who is in her mid-twenties. As a Save the Children Caregiver, Phales teaches in the Early Learners center in their community, working with children ages 3 – 8 in developing their learning skills in sponsorship supported programs. She also assists sponsorship operations, for example, helping children reply to sponsor letters.
A spectacular show filled with drumming, dancing, and educational poems had even the children in the back rows of the hall on their feet, as they struggled to see what was happening ahead. Poems were also shared by children on topics related to child protection, equal opportunities, and child empowerment. Luckily for Sara and her mother, together with some of the other younger children, they were given seats right in the front row.
With organizations like Save the Children giving a second chance to the lives of many children through bigger and brighter education opportunities, every last African child can shine and contribute positively to their society.
Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.
By Carolyn Miles, President & CEO, Save the Children
When I met him, Isaac was hungrily drinking the milk his mother gently brought to his lips in a little plastic cup. At thirteen months old, he was stick thin but already so much better than when he arrived a week ago. The doctor told me he was so weak from pneumonia on top of severe malnutrition that he had to be fed by an intravenous tube in his tiny arm – now he was sitting up to eat. In about a week, he’ll go home with a two-week supply of peanut-based food and come back to the out-patient facility to ensure he’s putting on weight. Once the health workers are assured of his progress, he’ll hopefully transition to a regular diet of breast milk and porridge – the perfect meal for a growing baby boy.
There were about 40 other children at the Save the Children stabilization center in Baidoa, Somalia when I visited – some so malnourished they couldn’t hold their heads up or eat on their own and others on the way to recovery. The children in the stabilization center are not only suffering from severe malnutrition but other complications like diarrhea, pneumonia, or malaria – illnesses that prey on immune systems weakened by hunger. Conflict in Somalia between the government and Al Shabab has displaced millions of families, and the center’s two doctors and their staff are busy every day taking care of children whose families are struggling to provide food in the middle of the conflict. The conflict keeps families from their farms and pastures and makes the country one of the most food insecure in the world – more than one million of Somalia’s children are acutely malnourished. While the stabilization center is making a big difference, the staff is worried about new funding and when it might come to keep the center operating.
During my recent trip to Baidoa, I also visited a camp for internally displaced persons – people who have had no choice but to leave their homes. I met with Issa, who arrived at the camp six months earlier with her four children when the fighting reached her village 60 km away. As a divorced woman, she was left with no resources after her small livestock herd died and she was concerned about getting her infant daughter, Laila, the medicine she needs to combat an upper respiratory infection that makes her wheeze. The conditions inside the camp are grim, and mothers and children pick their way around the huts covered in plastic, clothes and cardboard to keep out the rain that turns the ground to mud.
Issa’s own challenges are made more difficult by the many layers of problems most people in Somalia face. In addition to the threat from Al Shabab and the persistent drought that jeopardizes the livelihoods of millions of people like Issa who depend on livestock and grazing land to survive, 60% of the population lives in persistent poverty with less than $1 a day. All of these factors conspire to make Somalia one of the most difficult places on earth to be Isaac, Laila, or any child – as shown in this year’s End of Childhood report.
But my visit also showed me there is hope here. My Save the Children colleagues, the under-resourced but remarkably determined Baidoa government, and the many partners working together are making a difference for these children and so many others. There’s no denying that life here is extremely hard, but progress can be seen little by little as children recover and heal and mothers find the strength to keep going and look to the future.