C.A.R.E. is a community-based, indigenous, non-governmental organization (NGO) established to help disadvantaged and marginalized youth take control of their lives and destinies. The first C.A.R.E. Life Centre was established in 1993 in response to the lack of programmes for young people, particularly adolescents, who were in very difficult social conditions and required urgent attention. The education system had rejected them because they failed their examinations, and society had rejected them because they did not possess the skills to be employed.
Duration: Starting 1993
Contact: Dr. Karleen A. Mason
Address: P.O. Box 156, Castries, St. Lucia
Telephone: (758) 451-1510
Country: St. Lucia
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What changes are being sought and why?
The programme offered by C.A.R.E. aims to foster positive attitudes in these adolescents towards themselves, others, work, and work-related situations, thus empowering them for more wholesome, independent living. It also seeks to train them to manage their own developing sexuality, both physical and emotional, as they prepare to make their reproductive and parenthood decisions and to provide them with a marketable skill to aid their search for employment. Without this intervention, these adolescents would be left to roam the streets with nothing to do and nowhere to go, which could result in their gravitating towards deviant activities.
How is it accomplished?
The programme is implemented in two phases. In Phase 1, the student participates in a one-year Adolescent Development Programme (ADP), which provides opportunities for growth spiritually, physically, intellectually, culturally, emotionally, and socially. In Phase 2, the is given the opportunity to spend at least one year training in an income generating skill of his or her choice.
What results are becoming evident?
The ADP has been found to be successful in transforming the lives of the students, and the Skills Programme has been adequately preparing the students for employment. These successes has resulted in an increase in requests for admission from younger students in the 11–14-year-old age group who are looking for an alternative to the traditional educational experience.
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