Foxes Community and Wildlife Conservation Trust
“To provide shelter, sustenance, education and medical care for vulnerable children and families in the Mufindi District of Tanzania; to curtail the spread of HIV/AIDS, to teach life skills (language, fiscal, vocational and self-sufficiency) and to create supportive networks and opportunities for future generations.”
FCWCT works across three sectors - Childcare, Education and Healthcare - to respond to the needs of the community and provide advocacy and access where it’s needed most. Current projects include providing direct orphan and foster care at the Children’s Village, overseeing the implementation of Kindergarten classrooms in local villages, sponsoring vulnerable youth in school, training local community health workers and supporting of local HIV/AIDS clinics.
Led by an on-site Physician, Dentist and Nurse, the Health team in Mufindi oversees a number of programs aimed at providing healthcare access and advocacy to those who need it most. Through training 21 local community health workers, providing life-saving clinical care to 1,000 patients and supporting vulnerable HIV+ caretakers and their infants with nutritional supplementation, little by little, Mufindi is becoming healthier. To date, over 5,000 HIV+ clients have registered at our local clinic to receive HIV care and treatment.
THE CHILDREN’S VILLAGE CLINIC
Beginning in 2013, FCWCT broke ground on an on-site clinic to serve the Igoda Children’s Village and neighbouring villages. As of July 2015, the FCWCT health department made the final move to call the Luhesela Clinic “home”. Both the Home-based Care Program and Milk Powder Program work out of the clinic, as well as all voluntary medical professionals. The clinic serves as a headquarters for visiting doctors, nurses and co operants who are encouraged to bring medicine and supplies with them to contribute to the medical stocks.
MDABULO CARE AND TREATMENT CENTRE
In 2009, construction began on a Care and Treatment building that would give the surrounding areas access to life-saving HIV/AIDS treatment. The facility has a completely renovated pharmacy, doctor’s consulting rooms, a fully functional maternity ward complete with a labour room, post-natal room and delivery room, furnished with useful equipment. The HIV treatment facility includes a CD4 machine and reagents that complete the resources needed to have complete HIV treatment. Now handed over to the government the facility has a comprehensive treatment plan for HIV/AIDS.
CONSTRUCTION OF CLINICS
2009 FCWCT contributed towards the construction of a clinic and pharmacy in Ibwanzi Village.
2010 FCWCT contributed towards the construction of a clinic and pharmacy in Chogo Village.
Igoda Village built a clinic equipped with a maternity ward with funds from FCWCT in 2018.
By providing access to education, FCWCT is changing the trajectory of children’s lives, from infancy to adulthood. Our Early Childhood Education Outreach program is now located in 8 villages and trains over 20 teachers per month. 2017 saw the completion of a new Vocational Training Centre that will serve 100+ young adults in learning trades to generate income for themselves and their families. Today, 82 of Mufindi’s most vulnerable children are receiving financial support to attend primary school, secondary school and university.
Opening its doors in 2010, the Threads Vocational Sewing School has provided vocational education to upwards of 75 students. A new vocational training centre building has been completed, which will hold the sewing school classrooms as well as other trades such as computer studies, carpentry, mechanics, tourism guiding, hotel management, masonry, plumbing and mechanics. In 2018, FCWCT has partnered with Udzungwa Training college which has graduated students in tourism guiding and hotel management.
KINDERGARTEN OUTREACH PROGRAM
A lack of training and resources renders local Kindergarten teachers ineffectual in the difficult environment, resulting in low quality or non-existent ECE for over 3,000 children under six years old (estimation of 200 pre-primary aged children per village). In response to this gap, FCWCT created an outreach program in 2013 to support existing kindergarten/pre-school classrooms and the establishment of new kindergarten classrooms in the village, through monthly training seminars, the provision of locally resourced classroom materials and monitoring and evaluation visits to classrooms. The goal is to create long-term advocates for early childhood education within the community. This is combined with a rigorous training program for participating teachers and the creation of a feedback loop that supports teacher advocacy.
The Children’s Village continues to be a safe haven for Mufindi’s most vulnerable children. Over 120 children, ages 0 -17 have received shelter, sustenance, education and counselling from its hardworking House Parents and staff. The Social Welfare team also works in the 16 village project area to identify poor households who need help and provides support/interventions to keep families together.
THE CHILDREN’S VILLAGE
Currently, there are 51 orphaned, vulnerable children living at the Igoda Children’s Village (ICV); 10 children are living with HIV and an additional 4 children are living with life-long physical and mental disabilities. Roughly over 85% of the children living in the ICV are victims of neglect, abuse or torture. The children receive food, shelter and protection as well as medical treatment, psychological counselling, youth empowerment and educational support.
THE MILK POWDER PROGRAM
The Milk Powder Program (MPP) has been providing life-saving milk powder and lishe power (nutritious, calorie-dense porridge powder) to HIV+ mothers and caretakers, as well as orphaned/vulnerable children (OCV) living at the Igoda Children’s Village since 2010. In this time frame, the NGO has provided better nutrition and HIV prevention for over 230 vulnerable infants and toddlers in Mufindi. Distributing milk powder and Lishe powder is done to improve the nutritional status of OVC’s in the villages and prevent vertical transmission (mother to child) of HIV.
SOCIAL WELFARE AND CHILD RIGHTS ADVOCACY
FCWCT has been working to provide social welfare interventions to orphaned and vulnerable children (OCVs) in the community since 2008. This ensures that the Children’s Village remains a safe haven for only the most vulnerable children while expanding services to all OVCs who need assistance. The guardianship department works closely with the local and district Social Welfare Office in order to bring more time and attention to vulnerable children in the local villages - particularly those outside the Igoda Childrens’ Village direct care - in order to provide aid to OVCs living in the village. FSCWT’s social welfare office follows up on cases of children who are not attending school or who have been reported as living in unsafe conditions to the Village Child Protection teams. On average, 10 families are visited each month. These families receive various support from FCWCT, such as healthcare advocacy, encouraged participation in an income-generating project, provision of school uniforms/school supplies, or enrolment in one of the many outreach programs (Milk Powder Program, Early Childhood Education Outreach etc).