Temporary street children centres
The educators meet with the children on the streets both by day and by night. Those who agree to follow the mare initially directed to one of the three temporary street children centres of which two are located in Phnom Penh and one is in Poipet, close to the Thai border. The educators who meet with the children also work in the temporary centres on a daily basis, which allows for continuity of contact with the children. While the regular tours of the streets are a way to meet the children in need, partner NGOs, the Cambodian Ministry of Social Affairs and neighbours also bring children to the Krousar Thmey centres.
The temporary reception centre for street children is only a stopover point. In general, the children remain for between three and six months, the time required for our educators to undertake a thorough investigation into the reasons that led the child to take to the streets. The educators review the economic, social and psychological situation of the child’s family so as to be able to offer them the most suitable solution: reintegration into the family, or integration into one of the permanent protection facilities, namely a permanent protection centre or family house.
At the temporary reception centres, children are entirely at liberty to come and go as they please. Sadly, many children choose to return to the streets, lured by the sense of freedom or drugs. Experience shows that motivation of the child is essential to escape the hellish life on the streets and build a better future.
The children are kept busy during their time at the centre. The children’s lives are given a routine to provide maximum motivation. Various informal courses are available: in Khmer, mathematics, morals and hygiene. The children also participate in dance and singing lessons, in presentations on the rights of children and prevention sessions. The sharing of daily tasks such as cooking and cleaning teach children the basics for adult life. Times of rest and leisure in the evenings and on the weekends are reserved for napping, playing and watching TV.