The Birth of Gentle Heart Foundation
The Gentle Heart Foundation was born out of a sense of heart for orphaned children of Nepal and the personal experience of the founder. The founder says that the service should originate from the heart and be implemented by the hands, this is how the name Gentle Heart Foundation came to be! He took in his first child in 2002 and after marriage in 2003 they had three boys living in their new apartment. Support for the needs of the children comes to the Foundation by their own work and gifts of friends. Today they have rented an 8 room home that provides space for 18 children. 6 others have gone on to work or further schooling. In 2009 the work expanded to children whose families are trapped by poverty, disability and/or exploitation. In 2015 it expanded further to include exploited and high risk women of Nepal.
“To help orphaned, underprivileged and destitute children of Nepal as well as high risk girls & sexually exploited women in their need and help them to feel the fullness of life.”
Through its workers and volunteers the Gentle Heart Foundation aims to care for the rejected, be a family for the orphaned, help the helpless, provide a home for the homeless, give hope to the hopeless, and meet the basic needs of needy children & exploited girls/women and offer them a better life.
What We Do
Gentle Heart Foundation is a nonprofit, non-governmental organization in Nepal; launched in 2002 to help orphaned and vulnerable children and high risk & sexually exploited girls/women by providing them with a loving family environment within a home and working for their holistic development.
Our Service and Values
- Provide a family environment for orphaned and vulnerable children within a home.
- Provide for the educational needs of the children through scholarships & an After School Program.
- Nurture the physical, mental, and psycho-social health and personality aspects of endangered children.
- Provide primary health care and basic as well as technical education for the children & women.
- Run and support various community-based programs that address and facilitate the fundamental rights of the children & women.
- Involve and invite the participation of local people in activities and education regarding child development and women’s rights.
- Run a Recovery Home for high risk and exploited girls/women that provides a safe environment for them to work on their personal recovery.
- Provide Recovery Day Program that incorporates life skills training and teaching for high risk and exploited girls/women that will enable them to be reintegrated into society.
- Encourage individuals to stretch out their hands to help needy children around them.
- Create awareness of the horrors of human trafficking and how to work to combat it.
- Provide vocational training for high risk girls and/or poor women through prevention programs.
1. Children’s Programs (Children receive the benefits of all of these programs)
a. For Abandoned Children
These children have no one around to care for them. Their parents may have died, been victims of civil violence or are simply untraceable.
Our response: Gentle Heart Children’s Home
b. For Exploited Children:
These children fall into 4 categories, although overlap between categories is common.
i) Child Labor
Many children work to help supply their family income, or simply because schooling is unaffordable. These children may work in such places as restaurants, factories, or family-run fields. According to UNICEF, 34% of Nepalese children fall into this category.
Our response: Scholarships & After School Program
ii) Child Slavery
These children do domestic work, or labor for businesses such as carpet factories, brick kilns and restaurants. Many of them are sold or forced into slavery due to extreme poverty, while many others are abandoned children “taken in” by the businesses.
Our response: Gentle Heart Children’s Home
iii) Local Sex Trade
For the many children forced into the local sex industry, returning to a normal life can be very difficult due to social attitudes, or simply because they lack the skills to enter legitimate employment.
Our response: Gentle Heart Children’s Home or Reintegration
iv) Human Trafficking
Nepal has one of the world’s largest number of trafficked persons per year. Many of these cases occur by relatives and/or youngsters being tricked by promises of attractive employment overseas.
Our response: Awareness campaigns
2. Prevention Program
Training in various skills such as tailoring, cosmetology etc. is provided to empower women. Timely awareness campaigns are conducted to educate women in order to prevent them from becoming victims of either the local sex trade or human trafficking.
3. Holistic Development of exploited & high risk Women
Tens of thousands if not more, young Nepali women are being sexually exploited across Nepal in cabin restaurants, tea shops, dance bars, brothels and on the streets. In India and abroad hundreds of thousands of young Nepali women (if not more) are being sexually exploited and held against their will. With this in mind, Gentle Heart Foundation (GHF) offers long term Recovery Based Programs for women & female youth who have been sexually exploited/trafficked who have chosen to leave the sex trade, or escaped the brothels, or were forced to leave because of age or illness. These Programs are also offered to women and female youth who are at risk of being sexually exploited or trafficked. The long term social return of these Programs is that the women who go through them will able to reintegrate into their communities and become productive members of society.
The Long Term Recovery Based Program is organized into the following phases with the constituent parts of each phase spelled out below the heading.
a) PHASE I
i. Housing for moms & kids and a Parent Support Center.
ii. Housing for single women - Frontline House
iii. Recovery Day Program and Beginning Vocational & Educational Development.
iv. Housing for Single women from KTM/for women coming back to Nepal from the Rescue Mission in India
v. Childcare and education for the children of the women involved in Phase I and II Programs who are over age 3.
b) PHASE II
i. Transitional Housing for Women with or without children
ii. Advanced Day Program for Vocational & Educational Development (which includes job shadowing, employment training, paid work experience within or outside GHF, skill development, education and set up in micro enterprises – for a maximum of 6 years for women involved in Transitional Housing).
c) PHASE III Followcare Program
i. All Graduated Participants will be given ongoing personal monitoring to ensure that they are achieving their goals and living safe and productive lives.
d) PHASE IV Servant Leadership Program
i. Opportunities are given within Gentle Heart Foundation for successful participants to mentor and encourage current participants in their recovery journey.
4. Relief or Emergency Response
GHF is always there to respond the emergency need of the people !