Miracle Foundation Global Orphan Project

update

for November 6, 2019

This update comes from our partners at The Miracle Foundation, an international nonprofit organization supporting orphaned children in India, Uganda, Ethiopia, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Mexico and the United States. The organization ensures orphans receive all of their rights, per the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Earlier this year, Legacy Collective awarded a $25,000 grant to The Miracle Foundation to support their Global Orphan Project and provide them with the capital needed to formalize a partnership among more than 60 different governmental organization and NGO’s to eliminate the need for institutionalized orphanages by the year 2040, in an effort that is the first of its kind.

The First Project of it’s Kind

Miracle Foundation is grateful for [it’s] generous partnership [with Legacy Collective]. With you support, we are making strong progress toward our collaborative efforts to reach our goal, establishing the first project of its kind, eliminating the need for institutionalized orphanages by 2040 though a family for every child. We are supporting orphans to have a better quality of life while bringing about systemic, sustainable change that transforms the need for orphanages.

Progress and Achievements

September 2019 was an eventful month. In New York, Miracle Foundation joined its partners at the United Nations General Assembly and called on the UN to keep families together. Miracle Foundation is one of 12 organizations leading the advocacy and collaboration efforts for this global movement. Also in September, Miracle Foundation staff members (80) from the US and India came together for the first time to strategize on ensuring children remain in or reunite with family. Our work in the past was solely based on relief efforts but has evolved to partnering with UNICEF, governments, local NGOs and other officials to create a cascade effect to transform child care in 10 states across India.

Miracle Foundation is part of a global network of over 250 non-profit organizations leading the world-wide movement to end the need for orphanages by 2040. [We are] leading this charge by:

  • Implementing on-the-ground with global impact.
  • Leveraging technology to solve the global orphan crisis.
  • Engaging the voice of children as advocates in their own crisis.

Universal Children’s Day is Nov 20th. The UN created this day in 1954 to promote international togetherness and awareness among children worldwide. UNICEF promotes and coordinates this day which also works towards improving children’s welfare. It is a particularly important year as November 2019 also marks the 30th anniversary on the Rights of the Child by the UN. Miracle Foundation is joining in on the celebration and promoting this day across social media and the press. We want more people to be
educated on the fundamental rights to which all children are entitled and which drive our work.

In October, Miracle Foundation was awarded the Rockefeller Foundation Land Grant to their Bellagio Center in Italy. This prestige award is granted to organizations poised to strategize on a global solvable issue. Conferences at the Bellagio Center invite leaders working in a wide array of disciplines and coming from many geographies to advance ideas for social impact and catalyze concrete action that has the potential to drive positive and far-reaching change.

The goals for the Bellagio Center are: (a) maximizing potential for impact on important global issues; (b) building new connections across geographies, disciplines, and/or professions to promote creative problem solving; (c) prioritizing interaction, dialogue, and shared learning among participants through formats other than traditional lectures or presentations. The participant invitation list are from outsiders in view of a global perspective. These include anthropologists on culture and behavior change, social protection specialists, gender specialist, education field experts and other disruptors in an effort to maximize potential for impact on important global issues that impact children going to orphanages.

Miracle Foundation CEO, Leslie Beasley, and Founder, Caroline Boudreaux will be leading the workshop with facilitator, Daniel Swartz, CEO of Dynamica, Inc., a philanthropic foundation and multi-family office serving some of the world’s most generous and effective philanthropists. The workshop will be in early February 2020 and we will be excited to share with you the outcome. Several of the solvable global issues that have come out of the Bellagio Center include the design and focus of UNICEF in 1964 and formation of the Gavi, Vaccine Alliance.

“For small ideas, you can go to any retreat, but to think expansive, fearless ideas and then design something innovative and courageous to put them into practice, there is no place like Bellagio”

Seth Berkley

CEO, Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance

Milestones 

In July, Miracle Foundation brought together 12 children – selected from orphanages all across India – to train in leadership skills and media communication so that they can represent the voices of children sitting in orphanages all over the world. We call them our Youth Ambassadors. Our goal with this program is to literally hand a pen or a microphone to the very children for whom we do this great work. Who better to represent the cause of orphaned and vulnerable children throughout India than the children themselves? They are the experts and their voices are the ones that should be heard!

Going into 2020 our Youth Ambassadors will be writing blog posts for Miracle Foundation as well as to be hosted on other youth advocacy platforms. The youth will be creating social media posts and videos that share their experiences and points of view as well as those of their fellow orphans. Some of the kids will lead talks at their orphanages. All of the children will be receiving 1:1 media training so that they are able to handle media interviews when they arise.

Along with our global partners, we have created a roadmap for achieving the goal of ending the need for orphanages by 2040. The roadmap is based on 8 key resolutions supported by the United Nations and endorsed by UNICEF. These resolutions are:

These resolutions are:

  1. Recognize and prioritize the role of families.
  2. Support families and prevent unnecessary family-child separation.
  3. Protect children without parental care and ensure high-quality, appropriate alternative care.
  4. Recognize the harm of institutional care for children and prevent institutionalization.
  5. Strengthen child welfare and protection systems and services.
  6. Ensure adequate financial and human resources.
  7. Improve data collection and regular reporting
  8. Ensure full participation of children without parental or family care.

UNICEF and Miracle Foundation are in the third quarter of our three year partnership working with 4 state governments in India.

The following milestones have been achieved:

  • Hired and trained an additional 22 staff for implementation
  • Developed the training curriculum (trainings are on track and exceeding expectations).
  • Trained 115 District Child Protection Officials (who return to their towns and serve as Master Trainers to create cascade effect and train other officials and orphanage directors).
  • On track to train 1689 officials on family based care and prevention.
  • Identification of local NGOs specializing in community building and prevention in 2 states to collaborate with Miracle Foundation social workers.
  • Conducted 6 immersion visits to orphanages since September.
  • Training planned for November in largest state partner of Maharashtra (state population of 112M).
  • Hired a Director of Advocacy and Policy

Impact by the Numbers

It’s a thrilling time for those of us who advocate on behalf of orphaned and vulnerable children. Around the world, a profound shift is underway—from orphanages and residential institutions to placing children in safe and nurturing homes. This new care model includes supporting children and families to prevent separation, reuniting children with their birth families, kinship care, and adoption. And Miracle Foundation is on the front line.

  • 13,548 children being cared for and supported
  • 2,300 government officials and childcare workers trained
  • 710 children reunited back into family care
  • 100% of children enrolled in school
  • 84 youth attending higher education/ college

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