In Uganda and Ethiopia, our specialist teams engage with children and help keep them safe. We help children out of dangerous and vulnerable circumstances, such as living alone on the streets, and encourage them to join our Lighthouse centres, starting a journey of restoring the life of a child through safe shelter, counselling, educational opportunities, and fun activities. Our goal is to reintegrate children to their families, or to another safe family or community setting, and to work with them via continued support to bring about positive and long-term change in their lives.
Our Lighthouses in Cambodia, Uganda and Ethiopia are short-term assessment and transition centres for victims of sex trafficking, forced labour or forced marriage in the days and weeks immediately after rescue, or for vulnerable children who have been living on the streets. Our intensive model provides crisis support, family and community assessments, professional interventions and collaborative planning with government agencies to prepare survivors for reintegration into their communities or entry into a longer-term aftercare project, such as our Stepping Stone initiative in Cambodia.
We return children home to a safe family environment and support families to prevent children separating from them again. We have built an international reputation through our work on family reintegration, developing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), a training curriculum and toolkit. When returning a child to their own family is not safe or not possible, we seek to help through foster care or, if appropriate, by giving them the skills and tool to live independently.
In Cambodia, for survivors who have regained physical and emotional health at the Lighthouse but cannot or do not want to be reintegrated to the community where they grew up, the Stepping Stone program is an alternative that empowers them to embrace their freedom and live happy, fulfilled and independent lives. We give them the skills they need to look after themselves, live independently and work, while still benefitting from the guidance of a mentor and being part of a survivor support group. Our links with local businesses mean survivors can often join training programmes and do apprenticeships, leading to safe, stable work.