The Emmanuel Family

twins 6 IMG_5883

Hope Rising Homes Foundation is a non-profit organization with the mission of caring for orphans, vulnerable and at-risk children. The project tagged “Rehabilitating a family of 8 with 6 children” was embarked upon because it is in line with our mission. We believe that this project will help reduce the number of children abandoned or put in vulnerable situations due to poverty, sickness or death of their parents/caregivers.
While there are a host of people needing humanitarian assistance, Mrs. Blessing Emmanuel (aka Mama Ibeji) attended the Hope Rising Homes Foundation (HRHF) December 2016 end-of-year Christmas party which was convened for orphans, vulnerable and at risk children in Lagos, Nigeria. Showing obvious signs of malnutrition and looking visibly unkempt; Blessing, along with her six children (8 month-old twins, 3, 5, 8 and 10 years respectively) caught our humane attention and we have decided to take on the project of rehabilitating the family. To this end, the family has been receiving monthly visits from our HRHF coordinator in Lagos from February till date; during each visit, essential food items as well as basic hygiene supplies are provided to the family by HRHF.

Upon interacting further with the Emmanuel family, the HRHF coordinator was made to understand that while the family has always been a low-income family, they were able to get by when Blessing owned and operated a small rented grocery stall while her husband was a truck driver before losing his job. They were then living in a one-bedroom apartment in a remote part of Lagos, Nigeria. The family fell on harder times and experienced their worst predicament when their residence and stall were demolished by the Lagos State government in 2016 with no plans for the government to rebuild the facilities. The Emmanuel family is presently living in a hut built with planks, with no running water, no bathroom, and toilet. The hut is located on a saw mill (log factory) where fire outbreaks are rampant due to the hazardous chemicals igniting the flammable wood chips. The abode poses a serious threat to the health and overall well-being of the six children as well as their parents. The school-age children are unable to attend school due to poverty; instead the children go with their mother to beg for money on the notoriously unsafe streets of Lagos so as to get a meal daily. This definitely increases their risks of exposure to harm and even death from child abusers, kidnappers, and ritualists.

Hope Rising Homes Foundation is soliciting crowd funding help to give hope to the Emmanuel family. Funds raised will be used to provide a low-cost but decent shelter, daily meals, basic health essentials, and school supplies to allow the school-aged children attend school. The funds will also re-train Mr. Emmanuel in a trade, and purchase a rickshaw (small moped used for local transportation) so he can earn a living to support his family. Orphans, vulnerable and at-risk children can come about as a result of death of one or both parents, poverty of the parents which could result in abandonment of the children, homelessness, and diseases. We strongly believe that if this family’s basic needs can be meet, it will give both the parents and children in particular, a renewed sense of self-worth and belonging within the Nigerian society, along with a more stable mental and physical health. While we can’t save everyone, rehabilitating this family will be a step in the right direction towards ensuring that these six children do not add to the number of orphans, vulnerable and at risk children who account for over 40% of the total population of children in Nigeria.

Duration of project
This project will last for 3 years. At the end of the third year, it is expected that the family would have acquired some commercial and economic knowledge and skills to generate revenue, developed self esteem, all school-aged children will be attending school, and the parents would be able to live a normal life without any need for further assistance.

  • Our goal is to rehabilitate the Emmanuel family over 36 months by:
    – Renting a habitable and decent 3-bedroom apartment
    – Providing monthly allowance for feeding and upkeep
    – Paying school fees, buying school uniforms, shoes, and school supplies
    – Purchasing clothing for the family
    – Providing health care and counseling access for psycho-social needs (including birth control)
    – Purchasing a rickshaw for transportation business

  • Keys to Success
    – Build a strong team
    – Secure sufficient funds for project kick-off and on-going operational needs
    – Ensure that the project will satisfy the needs of the recipients

  • Accountability
    – Continue quarterly visits to the family to monitor and assess their needs
    – Design and implement strict financial control and accountability for the family

  • Documentation
    – Proper record keeping
    – Scalability of project (either upwards or downwards e.g. shorter duration)
    – Project could be used as a pilot for other rehabilitation

    Project could be used as a pilot for other rehabilitation efforts. Lessons learned will assist HRHF in other humanitarian efforts.