Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 22, 2019 (SKNIS): Officials at the St. Christopher Children’s Home continue to work with its residents to ensure that they are given the necessary care that will prove beneficial to the children’s overall growth which includes a child’s cognitive, physical, social and emotional development.
Shannizua James, Acting Administrator of St. Christopher Children’s Home, while appearing on “Working for You” on Wednesday, May 22, explained that the home is no different to an ordinary home outside.
“We run the home basically like any other home outside. First of all, our children must be in full-time education, it is a must at the Children’s Home, providing you in that educational age,” said Ms. James. “We like to have children choose their extra-curricular activities, something that they feel they would excel at and that they can use outside of the home later on when they leave the home.”
Naeemah Hazelle, Vice-Chair of Board of Directors, touched briefly on the extra-curricular activities stating that “every year what we aim to do is just continue improving. So, as we see the needs of the children we try to provide for those needs. Some of the kids do guitar… dance, football, cricket, so we try to keep them in those things.”
Ms. James stated that spiritual activity forms part of the children’s holistic development.
“…they have to be involved in church, not just be another face in the pew but you have to take an active role in your church,” she added.
She said that it is important to have persons who can visit the home to keep sessions with the children. Such persons include counsellors and mentors.
“We have counsellors who take time out and come help the children when they are going through any kind of situation that they don’t necessarily might feel comfortable in talking to a house parent or the administrator,” she said. “We have mentors. We are trying to actually get a lot more, whether from the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and even outside. So, these are some of the things that we do try to contribute to the holistic development of a child.”
Ms. Hazelle, shared similar sentiments with respect to mentors. She added that “we do need a lot of mentors but in saying that we also want people to come who are committed to the home because a lot of the children in the home people take them for granted.”