JCI PORT LOUIS POVERTY ALLEVIATION PROGRAMME
From October 15, 17 to December 31, 2017
Children and Inhabitants of Bois Marchand
Target avg age
Sustainable Development Goal
Education and Economic Empowerment
To end poverty through education by engaging the inhabitants of Bois Marchand in the development of their locality and engaging all sectors of the society
The adventure started 10 years ago with a Christmas party for the children of Bois Marchand. Throughout these 10 years the programme has faced several changes based on the requirements and availability of resources. Members have brought in innovative ideas to revamp the programme over the years. 10 years ago the ACF framework was not yet known by the JCI Port Louis members stood guided by their experienced senators and conducted a needs analysis which helped in identifying the issues, challenges faced by the inhabitants and find the relevant solutions. The Needs analysis is conducted every 3 years and the outcome in 2014 oriented the team in focusing on education. The JCI team took the challenge of providing academic and non-academic classes to the children such that they are more successful in their studies and become better citizens by learning to respect others. Bois Marchand is known as a village facing social difficulties and stigmata. The JCI team has decided, with the help of the inhabitants and other partners to tackle some of the issues to make the village a better one, through its local population.
It all started with a change in the children's behavior. At the beginning of the year the team welcomed new participants in the programme. Most of them heard of the programme through the children or their parents; the power of word of mouth communication. This in itself shows the impact of the programme as the children and parents who used to give low importance to education are themselves convincing others to join educational programmes. Also, today when you go to Bois Marchand you see less and less children just walking alongside the road in dirty clothes as most of them have joined the JCI PAP programme and have learned to keep their body and clothes clean (through our classes on hygiene). Bois Marchand was also known as a hotspot and at the beginning many of our members were reluctant to work on the programme. Today this fear has disappeared as the population has become more welcoming and is always reserving a warm welcome for our members and the invitees we bring such as the opinion leaders or international delegates. This year the 2017 JCI Vice President Mathew Mutavayi and 2017 JCI President Dawn Hetzel visited the project during their visit. Both were warmly welcome by the children and parents who prepared a special programme for the JCI VIPs as they would call them. The activities were fully prepared by the non-JCI volunteers who wanted to show the JCI members how they have been empowered and could organize the activities without them getting involved. JCI members only looked after protocols and at the same time taught the volunteers how to do it. The 2017 JCI President and 2017 JCI Vice President were very impressed and appreciated the wonderful work being done by the team. Five of our youngsters are actually working
-Since it is a 10 year project which we want to maintain the team would ideally wish to build a longterm partnership with the different sectors of the society. This help to create sustainable development for the community. Engaging a longterm partnership would make it less challenging financially as the team needs to look for finance every 2 years or on a yearly basis. With the change that will be brought by the government of Mauritius with regards to CSR funding, the team should work towards securing a longterm financial partnership. As from year 2018 companies will be asked to submit 75% of their CSR fund to the government foundation and they can use only 25% to support projects of their own that fall under the set criteria. In 2019 companies will be asked to submit 100% of the fund to the government foundation.
-The team would also like to replicate the project in different communities. Some fine tuning may be required to adapt to some specific requirements of certain localities.
-Involve more volunteers from partners and other stakeholders in the project such that they can inculcate this culture of volunteerism in their companies or surroundings