OFFICIALS: CHILDREN AT ST. CHRISTOPHER’S CHILDREN HOME NEED AN ENVIRONMENT OF TRUST

Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 22, 2016 (SKNIS)–Officials of the St. Christopher’s Children Home have underscored how important it is that children who reside at the home rebuild trust after they have been betrayed by adults.

Speaking on the Government’s radio and television programme “Working for You” (September 14), the officials said that the children do not live at the home because they have done anything wrong or of their choice, but that adults have failed them.

“The children really haven’t done anything. They are there because of their own protection… they are really there from our failures, not from their failures,” said Vice Chair of the St. Christopher’s Children Home Board, Naeema Hazelle.

Ms. Hazelle also appealed to adults in the community, especially those who want to volunteer at the St. Christopher’s Home, to show the children that they are trustworthy.

“They (children) have had a lot of mistrust and they have had a lot of adults that have betrayed them, so it’s important that when people are coming in to help them that they see that they are adults that just want to help them… they don’t have any expectations of them except (that) they just want to help them and that’s important to help them to deal with some of the trauma that they had to deal with,” Ms. Hazelle said.

Another member of the Board and a volunteer of the Home, Maia Hadi-Williams, also explained that the children are not kept at the home because they are bad children.

“I don’t want the children or the community at large to think that they are bad children, that they’re there because of something that they have done. It’s quite the opposite,” Hadi-Williams said.

Meanwhile, the officials pleaded with the public to ensure that the children are not bullied because they reside at the children’s home.

“It’s difficult to be a child growing up in the children’s home and children are teasing them…they’re already dealing with a lot of emotional issues,” Ms. Hazelle said. She also noted that due to the quality care provided to these children, it is hard nowadays to tell whether or not they are residents of the children’s home. “It’s a very different environment,” she said.

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