CHILDREN & YOUTH FIRST in short is also known as CYF, is a non-governmental organization established in 2008 by an idealistic, energetic group of nine like-minded youth volunteers from the urban Kathmandu periphery. CYF is also a 501(c) charitable non profit organisation registered in the state of Nebraska USA.
They have been volunteering together for many years since their school days on social causes affecting the less fortunate in Nepal. They are a highly responsible, motivated group of action and results-oriented young people coming from varied socioeconomic backgrounds, all wishing to demonstrate the concern of Nepali youth about social and development issues.
CYF’s vision is to contribute to creating fair and just opportunities for the children and youth of marginalized and disadvantaged families and communities, and to develop their abilities and capacities to the fullest extent to enable them to lead dignified lives in society. Their main focus is GIVING CHILDREN THE ACCESS TO THE RIGHTS and helping them provide a peaceful environment for quality education.
MISSION CYF gives priority to children and youth, who represent the future of the country. Providing access to health services; quality education; recreation; personal and life-skills development; and a peaceful, protective, safe environment, free from abuse and exploitation, will aid the children in developing their potentials to the fullest. A person’s income should not be the barrier to his or her child’s education or the type of education one receives thus education is meant for all!
CYF supports the education of underprivileged children by running a school dedicated for children with special needs.The school is called “Life Vision Academy” in short known as LVA. The school has been running for the past 7 years and caters to children who come from economically challenged families, single parents and children of migrant workers.
The education LVA provide to children are “OUT OF THE BOX” where children are given the opportunity to learn with participation in the class. The children are allowed to explore, create and learn from the environment around the school.
CYF felt this sort of education was necessary for children coming from underprivileged families because they either had to join a government school or not go to school at all. Participatory education is more accessible to families who can afford this education for their children. Families coming from economically challenged background have very less options while choosing a school for their child due to their conditions.
CYF and LVA thus plays a vital role to connect the gap between these families and education. Education should be equal to all children, we believe it should have no barrier of what one can afford.
CYF has two products that help the organisation to sustain and help the people who work hard to keep this work going!
“Haushala” in Nepali means “ENCOURAGEMENT”. HAUSHALA products are made by Nepali women of different background and stories.
Most of the women who help make these products come from economically challenged background, single mothers, broken families and women who have been victims of violence. Single mothers of children supported by the organization are also involved in this project.
WHY WOMEN AND INCOME?
In South Asia women have very little say about their decisions, opinions or even thoughts. They are only portrayed as a house maker. This is a situation common in poor to high class families in Nepal. CYF involve women for these skill training because they believe that “ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT” can help a woman in many different ways. It helps them to speak up, build their confidence and have a say for themselves. For many women coming from challenging backgrounds, the training house through the Haushala program has been a getaway for them.
“When women come here to our training house, they laugh, share their problems amongst each other and work together as a team. Some say its not just about the money they earn by making these items but the freedom they feel when they are here” – CYF