MISSION AND HISTORY
Happy Child Support has been founded by Samantha Verouden. A 24-year-old young woman, social worker and child coach in training from The Netherlands, currently living in Sal. During her study ''Social Work'' she has been focusing on a range of projects targeted at children and the poverty on Sal. After graduating from the University of Rotterdam in 2017 she decided to stay on the Island because of the loving people, the culture but more importantly to contribute to the lives of these young children. In 2018, two other members joined Happy Child Support: Eva van Dal, also from The Netherlands with a Bachelor of Education and Sarah Bartlett, from The United Kingdom with a Bachelor of Social Work.
Happy Child Support's mission is to offer vulnerable children a better future. This is done by developing programs aimed at increasing children's resilience, social skills and knowledge. We strive for achievable, personal and effective goals. We do not aim for huge, circumstantial changes but try to achieve small (personal) steps where we work on together with the children and their parents. The child's personal development and working through creative means such as drawing, painting, music and dancing are always key components in this process.
Happy Child Support has been a response to the results from observations and interviews done in shelters in Sal. Averagely, there are about 8 different shelters in Sal. These shelters try to provide daily basic needs to the children such as warm meals, drinks, tutoring and health care. Local children go to school and participate daily in programs from the shelters, they offer space for approximately 80 children. The observations and interviews were targeted at the social-emotional development of local children. These results show that the children struggle with a diverse range of difficulties which lead to problems in their social-emotional development and causes disturbed behaviour.
Led by the founders, Happy Child Support has been researching in what way these children can be supported effectively. From this point of view and the research results, Happy Child Support developed different methods, which are the foundation of the program, compatible to the needs and possibilities of the child.
After positive responses from the children, Happy Child Support developed the program further to be able to offer more to these children. The organization wants to realize two different projects: the coaching and workshop project and the Mi e Bo project.
''MY PASSION LAYS IN THE SOCIAL WORKFIELD. OVERHERE THERE ARE SO MANY CHILDREN WHO'S LIFE I CAN CONTRIBUTE TO. I GET SO MUCH SATISFACTION FROM GUIDING THESE YOUNG CHILDREN.''
EVA VAN DAL
''RIGHT AFTER I GOT ACQUAINTED WITH HAPPY CHILD SUPPORT, I KNEW I WANTED TO BE PART OF IT. IT'S AMAZING TO BE ABLE TO MEAN SOMETHING AND PUTTING MY KNOWLEDGE TO GOOD USE.''
SOCIAL WORKER & YOGA TEACHER
''BEING INVOLVED WITH HCS WAS THE OPPURTUNITY I NEEDED TO ''BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD'' TO WORK DIRECTLY IN PROMOTING THE HEALTH, WELLBEING AND EDUCATION FOR CHILDREN IN NEED ON SAL.''
SANTA MARIA, SAL,
VAN DER VLUGT FOUNDATION
ALKMAAR, THE NETHERLANDS
BE THE DIFFERENCE, TOURS AND EXCURSIONS; COASTER, S.U., LDA.