Yesterday was an inspiring and humbling day for all the ChildHope staff yesterday as we had our first opportunity to visit the field and meet the children supported by Butterflies. The day was a brilliant opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by children and young people throughout Delhi and India and learn how Butterflies is helping them.
Our day began at the Resilience Centre, a temporary shelter for children aged 5-16 years old. Here the children are provided with a safe place to sleep, learn and play away from the dangers of the streets. Some children may have run away from home or are lost having come from villages to find work in Delhi. At the centre Butterflies works to locate and reunite the children with their families and where this isn't possible they find more long term accommodation.
The Butterflies School of Food Preparation and Catering was our next stop and we met a group of inspirational adolescents with a passion for cooking and eagerness to learn. Many have enrolled in the school after having come into contact with Butterflies through their contact points. Here they learn to cook as well as the theory behind food preparation, catering and hospitality management. The school already has 26 graduates who are now undertaking internships in some of Delhi's top hotels. We are all convinced they have promising careers ahead of them in catering after sampling some of their wonderful food!
Throughout the city Butterflies also runs contact points where children on the street receive a formal education in informal setting and can talk with counsellors who provide vital support and advice. We were able to visit two such contact points during the day and talk with children who, although they have experienced so much hardship, were now so positive about their futures. This was true of all the children and young people we met and confirmed to us just how vital these services are and how important it is for us to ensure that even more children can be reached in the future.
Esther Evans, ChildHope's Fundraising Administrator