NGO to protect and educate vulnerable children
The HHN Foundation Thailand, founded in 2008 in Pattaya, is an NGO registered under Thai law. They provide protection, shelter, education and perspectives to almost 300 ill, orphaned, disabled and misused children in Thailand. They operate the Child Protection and Development Center (CPDC) and support the Pattaya Orphanage and the Sotpattana School for the Deaf. Pattaya in particular has an international reputation for child prostitution. Researchers targeting street children estimate that Pattaya has between 1,500 and 2,000 homeless and inpoverished children, and that the number is increasing. Most of these children have been physically and emotionally abused.
Contribution to well-being
HHN helps ill, orphaned, abondoned and disabled children to educate and develop themselves in a caring an protective environment. They believe ‘education is the key’. They solve problems holistically and colloborate with all parties involved such as families, communities, schools.
Their work includes the following:
1. Outreach work
HHN’s Mobile Training Unit (MTU) approaches vulnerable children in streets, construction sites, slums, schools, remote areas and at home when there are signs of abuse or neglect. HHN staff drives around in a van equipped with materials and tools to promote children’s rights, raise awareness of their situation and teach them skills to protect themselves. By creating a positive atmosphere and good relationship with the children, staff can also gather useful information about pedophiles and others who abuse children. This information is shared with authorities in order to be able to arrest them.
2. Drop-In Center and ASEAN Education Center (AEC)
The Drop-in Center (DC) is the first place where homeless and abused child victims can ask for help. It provides physical and mental protection and rehabilitation for children with safe shelter, food, clothing and medical care. Children receive consultation and assistance from a certified psychologist, nurse and social worker. The problems are analyzed and short and long-term solutions are proposed such as CPDC’s care. The ASEAN Education Center is attached to the drop-in center. It operates like a day care for migrant children to empower them with knowledge of basic life skills and education like maths and languases. There are approximately 80 migrant children come to AEC daily.
3. Child Protection and Development Center (CPDC)
The Child Protection and Development Center provides shelter, education and rehabilitation to abused and/or abondoned Thai children in Greater Pattaya. They live as a family with a caring, educational stepmother in compound houses. They all get chores to contribute to the household like washing, tidying up and working in the vegetable garden, They grow their own mushrooms, vegetables and herbs. They also have a pond full of fish, chickens for fresh eggs and
4. Preventive work
Prevention is the most important component in the fight against child abuse. HHN develops awareness materials and gives information and training sessions to kids, adults and organizations. For children they have developed the award-winning Child Protection Card Game. It makes children aware of their situation and what is right and what is not.
By information sessions more people become aware of the danger and consequences of living in the streets, human trafficking, sex and drugs related crimes and are encouraged to work together to combat these problems and take action in their own community.
HHN makes children and adults aware of human rights and support and encourage them to do the right things through education. The Child Protection Card Game is an educational tool developed by HHN. It aims to equip children with knowledge and decision making skills required so that they will not become victims of enticement or abduction. The game is a simulation of real life situations and circumstances. It encourage kids to use logical thinking and decision making skills to avoid enticement and abduction situations. The children learn playful what is right and what is not. By playing a game, they learn and remember better what to do in unpleasant situations and how to stand up for themselves.
In 2017, the Child Protection Cards Game, that had been developed by HHN, received the award “The Finalist of Social Impact Awards; Most Innovative Campaign by IFC Asia”
HHN offers children different ways to develop their life and job related skills and inspire others. At CPDC they have for instance their own land where they grow fruits and vegetables. It has become a role model for self sustainable agriculture for communities and a great natural way for therapy. They are also trained to co-create by putting added value to handicrafts from the neighbourhood like bags and baskets.