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Success Story: Family Reunification

September 26, 2017 · 

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Success Story: Family Reunification

Carlos and his siblings are among the hundreds street children in Metro Manila who have to beg and scavenge for food in order to survive. He is the fourth among five siblings who were left to themselves when their mother was arrested and jailed for use and possession of illegal drugs and upon the death of their father due to suicide. He
stopped schooling and at the young age of 10, he learned to sniff industrial glue to stave off his hunger and to steal so he can buy food and spend hours playing computers games, to which he has become addicted.

One day, Carlos was picked up by operatives of the Pasay City Social Welfare Department and placed behind bars in the Pasay Youth Home. While the social workers in said facility were helpful, the facilities were below standard and sub-human. The children were cramped in a very small cell and they receive very little, if any, therapeutic
activities. They spend most of their day watching TV.

The Preda Foundation has offered its services to the social workers of the Pasay Youth Home and in November 2016, they referred Carlos to the Preda Center for Boys. As many of you know, the Preda Center is an open center and despite of this (or maybe because of this) Carlos decided to stay and prove that with support and proper guidance children like him can change for the better. He always attended non-formal education sessions and after only a few weeks he already learned how to read and write. He also attended therapy sessions and together with the Preda social worker also visited his mother at the national penitentiary for women. During this visit, he reconciled with his mother who asked understanding and forgiveness for her shortcomings as a mother.

In April 2017, his mother was released from the national penitentiary. Upon her release, she decided to leave the city and live in Tarlac province to start a new life. Carlos and the Preda social worker soon visited her in Tarlac. Carlos and his mother were both very happy upon seeing each other. The mother expressed her desire to take
custody her child, and upon seeing that she now has the capacity to care for Carlos, Preda agreed to reconcile Carlos and his mother right then and there. It was such a happy reunion of mother and child.

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