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What Do Children Need?

A World Aware, Inc.

There are many things available for children to succeed in the Western world. The basic needs of children worldwide however are the same. Here is an excerpt from Community In School, an organization dedicated to keeping children in school and thus prepared for life.

"A one on one relationship with a caring adult. This relationship can be with a parent, relative, coach, church representative or mentor. (This is difficult to find in South Africa due to the devastation of HIV/AIDS.)

A safe place to learn and grow. If kids are homeless, they can't learn. Likewise, school must be a safe place. The key is to bring enough responsible adults into school to instill a sense of security. Programs that make schools a true community center, with before and after school programs, are successful. (Again, this is difficult when two generations of South Africans have been erased. The need is real however, and new thoughts will have to come forward to address this need.)

A healthy start and a healthy future. Kids need to be drug and alcohol free to succeed in school. Other obstacles are less dramatic, such as poor eyesight, asthma, lack of proper nutrition and dental problems. Often, communities have resources that can help out. They have to be made available to kids. (This may be true in many communities, but in the areas that AWA works in, the reality is there are few resources. Nutrition at early development gives cognitive ability for life, this is a serious need to address when children are infant age to 5 years old. This is why AWA puts an emphasis on working for the benefit of children.)

A marketable skill to be used upon graduation. Goals and a path to a career are critical to success in the classroom, because they give kids a reason to learn reading, writing and math. Getting kids to see that academics offer a way out of poverty is a huge motivating factor. (AWA wholeheartedly agrees. Education for the sake of education is great for personal amusement. Learning how to use education is a key factor to success. AWA delivers hands on programs to teach skills that can be used in a career path, but also provides counsel on how to establish a viable career path with these skills.)

A chance to give back to peers and the community. Giving kids a chance to give back through volunteering or mentoring is key to helping them find their own identity and self-worth. It's a huge boost for a youth to realize that he or she has a valuable gift to offer somebody else. (In fact this is the only way to provide a way out of the give me mentality so prevalent in our world today. If we require an investment of any type from a child for them to receive the best benefit of education this helps them put their heart into their effort. Once a child learns the impact they have on others they will be motivated to continue, but also to teach this to others in word and deed.)"

A World Aware's main focus is on creche (pre school) level children. We find creative ways to help others help this most valuable resource!