HEAR THE CHILDREN’S CRY
Hear The Children’s Cry is a voluntary organization providing urgently needed services for children and young people, many of whom face daunting odds and severe social and economic challenges. Established in 2002, we combine vigorous, high profile advocacy with practical programmes for children, families and youth. These include safety education in schools, parenting education, public education , counselling, community and family social outreaches, and projects to prevent both high school dropouts and runaways.
We established our multi-faceted Missing Children’s Support Programme in April 2009, with continuing support from Jamaica Yellow Pages.
Though our advocacy serves all Jamaican children, our programmes target specifically the large majority who face severe economic hardships and live in marginalized communities plagued by horrendous levels of crime and violence. Their families are largely fragmented, often lacking in positive parenting skills, and in many cases unaware of the basic rights of children and of both established and new legislation for their protection.
Our team members boast an average of three decades working in critical programmes for children and young people. Their areas of expertise and experience include social work, advocacy, youth mentoring, education, remedial education, innovative outreach projects for unattached youth, communications and programme design and administration.
Hear The Children’s Cry is recognized as the leading Jamaican organization speaking on behalf of Jamaican children. We are widely respected for raising public awareness and national concern about child safety and atrocities suffered by children and young people, in a society increasingly de-sensitized by unprecedented levels of crime and violence
Our organization has won national and international respect for its innovative approach to forging solutions to seemingly daunting challenges. Team members who worked on a groundbreaking project for engaging young men from inner city communities (2006-2007) received a prestigious World Bank/Commonwealth Secretariat Award in a 2009 Caribbean Contest “Keeping Boys Out of Risk”.
Other achievements by the Hear The Children’s Cry team have included sensitising an estimated 235,000 children in 92 schools and 35,000 parents islandwide, on child safety and positive parenting; empowering 60 grade 9 students, 59 of whom graduated, during two years of out Prevent A Drop Out Programme, endorsed by the Ministry of Education; counselling and support to some …………… families through the Missing Children’s Support Programme, and counselling … former missing children.
- To serve as the voice of Jamaica’s children in the advocacy required to keep the concerns and interests of children at the forefront of Jamaican life.
- To engage in public education activities that promote and involve children and their parents/guardians.
- To facilitate and encourage children to speak for themselves on issues they deem important, and for their rights to be enforced and respected.
Our fervent vision is of a Jamaica in which all children are protected from physical, sexual, mental and spiritual abuse, by the promoting, preserving and defending of their well being and wholesome family life, through Christ centered principles.
Major Initiatives/Achievements by Hear
The Children’s Cry
- Hosting a National Mini-Summit on Sexual Violence Against Children (2006)
- Spearheading the Ananda Alert Rapid Response to Reports of Missing Children (2009)
- Hosting a two week Sensitization Programme for Professionals Across Jamaica Working with Children/Missing Children (2011)
- Hosting an islandwide Missing Children’s Stakeholders’ Consultation (2015)
- Launching the National Missing Children’s Awareness Week (2015)
- Being the first Caribbean organization to become a member of the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC) (2015)
- Publication of the e-newsletter The Children’s Voice
- Co-hosting, in partnership with the ICMEC & Facebook, a Specialised Interactive Workshop for Law Enforcement on ‘Investigative & Preventive Response to Missing
- Follow up on various Stakeholders’ Special Training
- Ongoing Research & Documentation
- Ongoing Family Counseling
- Positive behaviour change in children counseled
- Press Releases/Social Media outreach on critical issues.
- National Press Conferences – major coverage
- Raising national awareness
- Launching a critical School’s Safety Programme
- School Safety Programme reached 235,000 children in 92 schools 2002 – 2020
- Parenting Workshops sensitized 35,000 2002 – 2020
- Our Safety Outreaches, which have been face-to-face up to the time of the COVID-19 Lockdown, are now continuing virtually, through Social Media and online Webinars.
- Designing and implementing a successful Prevent a Dropout Pilot Project for secondary schools
- National Youth Help Project – Employment opportunities for at-risk youth
- National Youth Help Project featured on Scotiabank’s “The Teller” on TVJ
- Schools’ Recycling Competition in Kingston (30 schools)
- Schools’ Directory Competition in Kingston (35 schools)